The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) designated 2020 as the International Year of Plant Health (IYPH). The theme of this year’s annual forestry conference is compatible with the IYPH objective to raise awareness on plant health protection which can “reduce poverty, protect the environment, and boost economic development”.
Ireland has heavily invested in the forestry and forest products sector and as a result we have a valuable forest resource and a viable forest industry but there are many biotic and abiotic threats to our forests. The introduction of diseases and insect pests such as the great spruce bark beetle have the potential to destroy the livelihoods of forest owners with commercial forests and the Irish timber processing sector which depend on a healthy home grown timber resource. The threat of insect and fungal damage to Ireland’s trees and forests….