During pepper year 2017, the IPC made significant progress in preparing to take on a revitalized and even more active role in the sustainable development of the world pepper sector. My term of office as Executive Director was one of the most demanding tests I have faced in my professional career and took great personal satisfaction in the results achieved.
We have had a momentous year in 2017 as we launched the 45th IPC Session, ran several meetings and workshops and partnered with many stakeholders in sector to bring about our goal of achieving sustainability in the sector.
The year began with a very positive development for the IPC, as the Philippine joined the International Pepper Community, bringing to 07 the total number of member countries. Another major development was a new long-term strategy for promotion and market development prepared by Marketing Committee, which will help to reduce volatility by promoting value and differentiation through a multi-stakeholder network of partners. Besides, I particularly welcomed the progress in stimulating demand for pepper in producing countries, much of which stems from organizing international pepper days among member countries. As estimated, the world pepper consumption increases about 1% annually and in 2017 reached approximately 450,000 metric tons. Other notable changes include expanding the organization's work in providing relevant statistic, review and implement capacity-building projects.
In 2018, IPC has formulated a series of initiative to further strengthen its function and role which include quality standard harmonization among member countries and align with international agencies responsible for food safety; establishment of mobile app for disease and nutrient deficiency diagnosis, establishment of effective surveillance systems; revamp of the website to improve functionality, utility and appeal; partnerships and networking.
On this occasion, I would like to express my heartfelt gratitude to the industry engaged with the IPC. With diligence and competence, the industry ensured the smooth running of our meeting and contributed to the substantive results achieved. My thanks also go to all members of the organization and staff of the IPC for their continuing support and cooperation.
I am confident that the IPC will make a substantial progress in preparing for new responsibilities in the coming year and will continue to play its essential role in serving the world pepper community.
Hoang Thi Lien
INTERNATIONAL PEPPER COMMUNITY