Webinar on Agricultural plastics – Identifying knowledge gaps and demands for safe and sustainable use and management

The facilitators Luca Nizzetto (NIVA), Girija Bharat (Mu Gamma Consultants), Diya Chakravorty (NIVA), and speaker Richard Thompson (FAO) during the webinar’s introduction session.

Watch the recording of the webinar at the bottom of this page.

On Monday, 24th of April 2023, we organized the first seminar of the international webinar series “Agricultural plastics – Identifying knowledge gaps and demands for safe and sustainable use and management”. The first seminar focused on the Asian scenario: an agriculture sector rapidly transforming from mainly traditional to mechanized agriculture, in a socioeconomic context facing food security challenges – including those related to climate change.

The webinar specifically aimed at contributing to the effort of the Food and Agricultural Organization of the United Nations towards the formulation of a Code of Conduct on agricultural plastics for national authorities, farmers and industries operating in the sector. It also aimed to provide background that is useful for framing effective provisions on agricultural plastics under the upcoming Global Plastic Treaty.

During the webinar we also launched a digital survey to gather multi-actors’ knowledge and perspectives to enable mapping main knowledge gaps. This information will be used to elaborate the FAO code of Conduct. The date and speakers for the second seminar “Plastic in agriculture: A global perspective” will be announced soon.


With a projected growth of 50% in the next decade, plasticulture is gaining importance in agriculture worldwide. Plastic litter and microplastic pollution are caused by inadequate use and poor management of agricultural plastic waste. Agricultural sustainability and resilience require understanding on both the benefits and costs of plastic use.

In the context of emerging economies and developing countries, IKHAPP addressed the knowledge and capacity gaps associated with plastics in global agriculture.

We invited domain experts from Europe, Asia, Africa and Latin America to work together on the development of a synthesis document contributing to the international governance effort of formulating a code of conduct and policy options for achieving zero plastic pollution in agriculture.

Moderator Giulia Carcasci (FAO), facilitator Luca Nizzetto (NIVA), and panelists Satish Sinha (Toxics Link), Defu He (East China Normal University) at the webinar’s panel debate session.

Objectives of the Event

  • To identify and aggregate relevant knowledge holders from different geographical and socioeconomic contexts for initiating a discourse and providing a detailed insight into agricultural plastics.
  • To establish an international expert group working on agricultural, socioeconomic and environmental sustainability of plasticulture.
  • To initiate for elaborating a map of knowledge gaps on the environmental, agricultural and socioeconomic aspects of sustainability in agricultural plastics, in addition to disseminating the latest updates related to relevant research.

Speakers and agenda

Welcome adress Richard Thompson, Agricultural Plastics and Sustainability Specialist, Office of Climate Change, Biodiversity and Environment, Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations (FAO) 
Introduction to IKHAPP


Girija Bharat, Mu Gamma Consultants, India 
The international developments on the use of plastics in agriculture


Lauren Weir, Senior Ocean Campaigner, Environmental Investigation Agency (EIA)  
Knowledge requirements for making inventories of use and waste management of agricultural plastics


Demetres Briassoulis, professor, Agricultural University of Athens
What do we know about the levels and effects og plastic pollution in soil? 


Rachel Hurley, Researcher, Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA)
Fostering sustainable agriculture with plastics: A promising solution for the future


Smita Mohanty, Pr. scientist, Central Institute of Petrochemicals Engineering & Technology (CIPET), School for Advanced Research in Petrochemicals (SARP)
Panel discussion: The critical data gaps and research that are required to be addressed in order to resolve issues with regard to plasticulture Chair: Giulia Carcasci, agricultural Plastics and Sustainability Specialist,FAO


Divya Sinha, scientist and department head, Central Pollution Control Board (CPCB), Government of India

Satish Sinha, associate director, Toxics link

Defu He, professor, East China Normal University

Nityamanjari Mishra, scientist, Odisha University of Agriculture & Technology (OUAT), Bhubaneswar, India

Santhiya Ananth, policy coordinator, Children & Youth Major Group to UNEP

Closing remarks and webinar moderator Luca Nizzetto, Lead Scientist, IKHAPP / NIVA


This event was hosted by IKHAPP and powered by the Norwegian Institute for Water Research (NIVA)Mu Gamma Consultants (MGC) and GRID-Arendal.


  • Download the webinar flyer: 

IKHAPP agricultural plastics webinar

  • Watch the recording of the webinar: