The objectives of The Association shall be to collect and disseminate scientific information relating to all phases of the potato industry, including, but not limited to, teaching, research, outreach, breeding, certification, production, pests, transportation, processing, marketing and utilization.
An expanded vision for The Potato Association of America is essential as we begin the new millennium. The potato will play an increasing role in human nutrition as natural resources become scarce due to increasing human population and climate change. Heightened interaction between The PAA and other international potato associations is a critical goal. The PAA and its allied associations must strongly support the private sector through extension, research and commercialization efforts aimed at enhancing the role of the potato as the premier food source for the 21st century. To accomplish this, The PAA must provide leadership to the global potato industry in the 21st century. The suggested goals and steps directed toward their accomplishment are as follows:
A. Foster strong partnerships between public and private potato professionals Critical linkages between the PAA membership and public and private organizations involved with potatoes must be strengthened and expanded. Activities of the Association should be of sufficient importance to the private sector that corporate leadership would be willing to help finance programs. This can only be achieved through private sector participation in committees, symposia, and other activities at the annual meeting, and by offering training and outreach activities that are of compelling interest to the private sector. Steps leading to this type of interaction would include:
- Promote joint meetings with potato organizations, councils and boards.
- Create a committee structure for The PAA that includes key individuals from the private sector.
- At the Annual Meeting, offer symposia and other activities of interest to professionals in the private sector.
B. At the Annual Meeting, offer symposia and other activities of interest to professionals in the private sector.
A number of potato associations in developing countries have been formed over the years but have had difficulty becoming productive and influential. A linkage of potato associations would help to foster communication and strengthen both the local and global potato industries. Key to this would be the involvement of the International Potato Center (CIP), which has developed global research linkages. The PAA should be central to providing leadership to the development of joint activities among potato associations. Specific steps to be considered to reach this goal would include:
- Sponsor joint meetings addressing subjects of mutual interest to international potato associations.
- Seek input from international potato associations in planning the annual PAA meeting.
- Provide a directory of potential PAA speakers and associated topics for meetings of inter-national potato organizations and professional societies.
C. Become the major resource for science-based information about the potato The credibility of scientific research is based, in part, on the reputation of the journal in which it is published. The content of the American Journal of Potato Research needs to be broadened and the quality of both the scientific content and technical presentation needs to be strengthened. Today, telecommunication technologies can provide up to date information about the potato to researchers, industry representatives and the lay public.
- Publish the premier science-based research journal on potatoes.
- Provide the premier Internet-based resource of information on all aspects of potato production.
- Develop and maintain a searchable database of PAA publications.
D. Utilize important emerging technologies for potato improvement Technology has the potential to change life on earth during this century – perhaps more than any other factor. The PAA should provide leadership in identifying international technology projects for the improvement and utilization of potato. Specific steps to be considered to reach this goal would include:
- Sponsor emerging technology workshops at The PAA Annual Meeting and at industry meetings.
- Promote public awareness and under-standing of emerging technologies through publications and press releases.
E. Maintain a strong professional organization.
A mixture of both young and experienced members is required to identify and promote linkages among potato associations and between the private and public sectors. Without a strong, supportive, informed membership, none of the above goals can be realized. Specific steps to be considered to reach this goal would include:
- Actively promote participation in the annual meeting by all membership groups.
- Refine the PAA organizational structure and operation to promote member involvement.
- Create an advisory council reflective of membership demographics.
- Stabilize PAA funding by increasing the number of sustaining members and enlarging the endowment.
As we enter the 21st century, the potato will play a major role in providing an adequate, sustainable, high-quality food supply for all people on earth. The PAA can and should offer its expertise to the global potato industry. This will not take place by chance. Goals as outlined above must be prioritized and programs implemented now to provide linkages between the private and public sectors and the local and global potato community. To achieve this will require that our professional association be strong and our science solid.
(Approved at the 85th Annual Meeting of The PAA on April 26, 2001)