Rust Never Sleeps: Combating Plant Rust Diseases to Protect Our Food Supplies

Date: Wed 15 October 2014
Time: 5.45PM - 6.45PM
Venue: Eastern Avenue Auditorium
Cost: FREE


Presented by Professor Robert Park
Judith and David Coffey Chair in Sustainable Agriculture
Faculty of Agriculture and Environment, the University of Sydney

The World Health Organisation has estimated that about one third of the world’s population is well fed, one third underfed, and one third is starving. Plant diseases are a significant contributor to this imbalance, with conservative estimates of global losses of crops due to plant disease in the order of at least 10%.

Cereal plants are incredibly important – they are grown in greater quantities and provide more food energy worldwide than any other crop. We’ve been domesticating cereal plants for around 8000 years and our efforts to develop better yielding and disease resistant crops has had the negative effect of guiding the evolution of crop pathogens. We’ve inadvertently made new pathogen strains emerge that have at times caused crop failure and famine.

Find out how problems of inadequate food supply, the world’s increasing population and the emergence of new crop diseases are presenting significant challenges in ensuring adequate supplies of safe and nutritious food for all. Professor Park will reveal how plant diseases affect our very existence and the work his team do in developing new approaches for sustainable and environmentally friendly crop disease control.

Join us after this talk for hands-on activities and demonstrations.

Venue map: Eastern Avenue Auditorium

Bookings can also be made by calling (02) 9351 3021 between 10am and 3pm.