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Organised by the BRIGIT consortium, Xylella Awareness Week is an online event drawing together plant health inspectors, the horticulture trade, botanic gardens, environmental groups and members of the public.
The aim of the week is to share the progress made by the consortium, and to engage with different audiences to discuss risk factors associated with Xylella if it were introduced into the UK.
Four workshops are planned between 2nd and 5th March and will be presented in collaboration with the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra), the Plant Health and Seeds Inspectorate, the Horticultural Trades Association and PlantNetwork.
The workshops on 2nd and 3rd March are for plant inspectors and are by invite only.
The workshops on 4th and 5th March are open for registration as follows:
Forest Research workshop chairs and/or presenters are Gerard Clover, Ana Perez-Sierra, Mariella Marzano and Chris Pollard who will discuss what Xylella is, where it is found and, regulations, responses, and responsibilities.
Each session will be hosted virtually and will be approximately three hours long and will include a range of talks, activities, videos and discussion sessions.
BRIGIT is a multi-disciplinary consortium of 12 organisations including Forest Research and is led by the John Innes Centre and working across entomology, plant pathology, ecology, epidemiology, genomics, molecular biology and social sciences.
Xylella is a bacterial pathogen which was identified for the first time in Europe in Italy in 2013 and has subsequently been found in France, Spain and Portugal. The pathogen, which is spread by insect vectors, infects more than 500 plant, shrub and tree species, causing leaf scorch, wilt, die-back and in some cases plant death.
There is no known cure for the disease which has devastated olive tree populations in Italy. Xylella is not currently present in the UK but its introduction would have a damaging impact on natural habitats, forestry and horticulture industries.
BRIGIT is funded by UK Research and Innovation through the Strategic Priorities Fund, by a grant from BBSRC, with support from Defra and the Scottish Government.
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