The 4th IUPAC International Conference on Agrochemicals Protecting Crops, Health and Natural Environment—“Discovery and development of synthetic and natural products for health and pests management” was held at the National Agricultural Science Centre Complex, New Delhi, India from 7-10 January 2020. The conference acted as a forum for scientists of different disciplines, from academia, government, and industry to discuss the latest trends and discoveries in agrochemicals and phytomedicines and to suggest how these may impact on future policies at State and National levels. Honorable Union Minister of State for Panchayati Raj and Agriculture and Farmers’ Welfare, Government of India, Shri Parshottam Rupala, was the Chief Guest of the inaugural function while Secretary, Department of Chemicals and Petrochemicals, Govt. of India, Shri P. Raghavendra Rao was a special guest. A.K. Singh, Deputy Director General (Agricultural Extension), ICAR and Director, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, Pusa, New Delhi and Co-Patron of the function was also present at the Inaugural function. Rai Kookana, CSIRO, Australia, IUPAC representative, Jitendra Kumar & N.A. Shakil, conveners and Pankaj & V.S. Rana, co-conveners along with esteemed invited guests, distinguished delegates, representatives from academic and industry partners and media were present during the inaugural function on 7 January 2019. The conference attracted over 265 participants coming mainly from India but also from both developed and developing countries such as Japan, Sudan, USA, Australia, Germany, Switzerland, Afghanistan, etc. and included around 150 young scientists. The scientific programme was supplemented by an exhibition of scientific equipment and laboratory supplies.
The conference was spread over four days and had eleven plenary lectures, 36 invited lectures and 61 oral presentations in 24 sessions as well as 44 poster presentations in 3 different sessions by the different participants from India and abroad. A total of 20 delegates from 10 different countries such as USA, Australia, Japan, Switzerland, Venezuela, Afghanistan, Sudan were also present during the conference. The inaugural session was covered by Delhi Doordarshan Kisan, Official Agriculture Channel of India, and was telecast on 9 January 2020. Each day of the conference started with a plenary session and over the four days eleven plenary lectures were given covering various aspects of the research and development of agrochemicals, integrated pest management, nutraceuticals, and medicinal plants. The plenary lectures were delivered by scientists coming not only from India but also from Australia, USA, Japan, and Switzerland. The plenary sessions were followed by concurrent sessions at which a total of 36 invited lectures and 61 oral presentations were given covering topics such as pesticide residues, crop pests and diseases, exploring biodiversity for biopesticides and phytomedicines, genetically modified crops, pesticide resistance management, integrated pest management and nanotechnology. The oral lectures were presented at the conference with prizes given to the six judged to be the most outstanding: Modified QuEChERS based approach for the analysis and estimation of the Gibberellic acid (GA3) residues in chilli and its soil using LC-MS/MS by Mahesh Kumar Saini, Samsul Alam, Mukesh Kumar Singh, Sudeep Mishra, Lalitesh Kumar Thakur and Jitendra Kumar, Analytical Division Institute of Pesticide Formulation Technology, India.
Strategic use of pesticide for production of “Zero Residue” grape: Taking the advantage of modified field dissipation study by Ahammed Shabeer T.P., Sandip Hingmire and Kaushik Banerjee, ICAR-National Research Centre for Grapes, India.
Sorption of sulphonamide antibiotics in sandy loam soils by Neethu Narayanan, Suman Gupta and Tirthankar Banerjee, ICAR-Indian Agricultural Research Institute, India.
Fungicidal effect of nanoemulsions of neem and citronella oils against Rhizoctonia solani and Sclerotium rolfsii by Eisa O M Ali, Najam A Shakil, Virendra S Rana, Dhruba J Sarkar, Sujan Majumder, Parshant Kaushik, Braj B Singh and Jitendra Kumar, Department of Pesticides and Toxicology, Faculty of Agricultural Sciences, University of Gezira, Sudan and Division of Agricultural Chemicals, ICAR-Indian Agricultural Research Institute, India.
Spiropidion discovery: broad spectrum control of sucking pests and mites for multi-crop utility by Vikas Sikervar, M Muehlebach, P Maienfisch, A Buchholz and T Smejkal, Syngenta Biosciences Pvt. Ltd. India.
Development of slow release bioactive formulations using electrospinning technique by Dhruba Jyoti Sarkar, S. Das, D. Mohanty, B. K. Behera, B. K. Das, ICAR-Central Inland Fisheries Research Institute Barrackpore, India.
In addition, out of 44 posters, three were selected to be the best among the lot:
Diversity of Pollinator bee fauna vis-à-vis crops from Manipur by Jyoti, Nando Kumar, Romilla Akoijam and Debjani Dey, Division of Entomology, Indian Agricultural Research Institute, India and ICAR research complex for NEH region (Manipur center), India.