Next month’s International Allium Conference in will truly be a global event, drawing experts not only from U.S. soil but also from Russia, Japan, Argentina and other onion-producing regions around the world together for four days in Madison, WI.
Set for July 24-27, the three-pronged conference at the Madison Concourse Hotel will include the National Allium Research Conference, the International Allium Research Symposium and the National Onion Association’s Summer Conference in a terrific meld of all things onion.
A full schedule of events is posted on the NOA’s website, https://www.onions-usa.org/narc-iars-conference, along with the opportunity to register online. There are lodging registration deadlines, and it’s recommended participants book their accommodations early. The conference’s very informative booklet is downloadable at https://www.onions-usa.org/img/site_specific/uploads/19_Madison_BrochureWEB.pdf.
Billed as “the most important opportunity for agronomists, growers, or anyone involved in onion production to network with and learn from scholars and researchers from around the world,” the joint presentation includes thematic breeding sessions that include Breeding and Genetics, Production and Quality, Biotic/Abiotic Stress, Genetic Resources and Economics and Marketing.
Other convention highlights are the Allium Flavor and Quality session, the latest news in onion agronomy and a session on Allium Leafminer. There is also a tour of Gumz Farms, which produces 40 percent of Wisconsin’s onions, along with a tour of Seminis Vegetable Seed’s production program.
Key in the conference’s schedule are this year’s speakers, all of whom bring impressive credentials to the dais. Dr. Eric Block, Professor Emeritus at State University of New York at Albany and Fell of the American Chemical Society and American Association for the Advancement of Science, will speak on “Recent Advances in the Chemistry of Onion, Garlic and Other Alliums.” Dr. Block is also considered a world authority on “organosulfur and organoselenium chemistry, especially of genus Allium plants, and on the molecular basis of the sense of smell.” He is the author of “Garlic and Other Alliums: The Lore and the Science,” RSC Press, 2010, Cambridge, UK.
Dr. Claudio Galmarini will also be at the podium with his presentation “Effects of Nectar Composition and Oral Traits on Onion Seed Production.” An onion breeder at the National Institute for Agricultural Technology (INTA) in Mendoza, Argentina, Dr. Galamarini is also the coordinator of the National Vegetable and Flower Research Program of INTA. He is Professor of Vegetable Crops in the Agronomy Department at the National University of Cuyo, and since 1994 he has served as chair of the Edible Alliaceae working group of the International Society for Horticultural Science (ISHS).
Also speaking will be Dr. Ludmila Khrustaleva, whose invited presentation is “Molecular Cytogenetics in the Genomic Sequencing Era and Its Role in Onion Breeding.” Dr. Khrustaleva is head of Molecular Biotechnology Center at the Russian State Agrarian University in Moscow and the Timiryazev Agricultural Academy of Russia.
And the fourth speaker at the event is Dr. Masayoshi Shigyo, whose invited presentation is “Metabolomic Analysis for Allium Disease Resistance and Future of Multiomics Data Integration.” Dr. Shigyo is Professor in the Graduate School of Sciences and Technology for Innovation (Agriculture) at Yamaguchi University in Yamaguchi, Japan.
Sessions and meetings kick off on Wednesday, July 24, with details available in the downloadable brochure. Among the topics on opening day are “Chemistry in a Salad Bar” and “Genomics and Breeding.” Thursday’s agenda includes a look at the “Life and Research Impact of Dr. James Brewster” as well as “Finding Solutions to the Allium Leafminer – The North American Invasion.”
The NOA’s promotional fundraiser auction will be held Thursday evening, with full info in the brochure.
Friday will have a look at Pest Resistance and Management” and the Onion Industry Tour. Science Recognition and NOA Awards will be presented at the Friday night banquet.
Saturday brings NOA Crop Reports and the session on “Seed Production and Breeding.”