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USDA Reaffirms Science-Based Decision Making at G20 Agricultural Chief Scientists Meeting

TOKYO, Japan, April 26, 2019 – Two of the U.S. Department of Agriculture’s top scientists today reaffirmed the United States’ commitment to science-based decision-making at the G20 Agricultural Chief Scientists (MACS) meeting held this week in Tokyo.

Dr. Chavonda Jacobs-Young, USDA’s Acting Chief Scientist and Administrator of the Agricultural Research Service and Dr. Scott Hutchins, USDA’s Deputy Under Secretary for Research, Education, and Economics (REE), led the U.S. delegation. The United States has participated in MACS meetings since 2012.

“The G20 MACS brings together Agricultural Chief Scientists from around the world to deliberate on global agricultural research priorities,” Jacobs-Young said. “The meetings have proven to be essential in advancing the science and technology dialogue on critical issues facing the agricultural sector.”

“I was pleased to see an affirmation of the role for science-based decision making for advancing global food production in the MACS communique,” Hutchins said. “Globally, we are seeing an increase in the use of scientific information in policymaking and it is important that we remain vigilant in our risk assessment processes to ensure that we continue to accelerate innovation in agriculture.”

Hutchins said the USDA was also pleased to see support for the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) implementation of electronic phytosanitary certification (ePhyto) in the MACS communique.

“Embracing technological solutions such as ePhyto is critical to supporting efforts to minimize the global spread of transboundary plant pests,” he said.


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