Rising Productivity Threats to be Addressed by Rice Congress


The Philippines will host the 6th International Rice Congress (IRC) for the first time to provide holistic science-based solutions to the combined effects of climate extremes, imminent rice crises, conflict, and economic shocks on the rice value chain.

The Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) in Pasay City will host the quadrennial IRC from October 16 to October 19 and co-organized by the Department of Agriculture (DA).

“We look forward to meeting long-time partners and collaborators as well as new players in the agri-food, climate change, and nutrition sector and learn from each other,” stated Jean Balié, director general of the International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), in a statement on Tuesday.

The theme for this year is “Accelerating Transformation of Rice-Based Food Systems: From Gene to Globe.” IRCs have previously taken place in Beijing (2002), New Delhi (2006), Hanoi (2010), Bangkok (2014), and Singapore (2018).

As stated by Undersecretary Leocadio Sebastian, who heads the DA’s rice industry development arm, participants can expect to “learn about recent advancements in genetic, digital, and nature-based solutions, offering valuable insights to address the various challenges faced by the rice industry in the Philippines.”

He highlighted that the IRC is in charge of one of the Philippine government’s top priorities, establishing food self-sufficiency and improving the lives of Filipino farmers.

The IRC is the world’s largest gathering of rice scientists, industry professionals, policymakers, entrepreneurs, and other academia and civil society participants.

According to the Rome-based Global Forum on Agricultural Research, the event allows international stakeholders in rice research and production “to share the results of their work; intelligence on market trends, drivers, and developments; and together learn about factors that affect the rice industry and technologies in the short and long term.”