From September 25th to 28th the 7th International Conference on Selenium in Environment and Human Health (ICSEHH) took place at the Radisson Blu Plaza Hotel in Bangkok, Thailand, under the theme “Selenium for a Healthy World.” The event was organized by the Expert Centre of Innovative Agriculture (InnoAg) of the Thailand Institute of Scientific and Technological Research (TISTR), in cooperation with the Anhui Science and Technology University of China, the Nanjing Institute of Functional Agriculture Science and Technology (iFAST) of China, and the International Society for Selenium Research (ISSR).
Approximately 120 speakers and participants from 13 countries, including Thailand, China, South Korea, Brazil, Belgium, the Netherlands, the United Kingdom, Ethiopia, Ireland, Italy, Switzerland, the United States, and Argentina, attended the conference.
Dr. Fernando Muñoz from National University of Litoral in Argentina was invited to speak by the event’s organizing committee chairman, Dr. Gary Banuelos, a researcher of the Agricultural Research Service of the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA-ARS) and a world reference in selenium research.
During the conference, Dr. Muñoz presented his multidisciplinary research work conducted over the past years titled “Selenium Biofortification Improves the Nutritional Value and Post-harvest Quality of Broccoli Heads“. He explained how foliar selenium application on broccoli crops not only increases the intake of essential nutrients in a healthy human diet but also adds value during post-harvest storage, extending the shelf-life of the broccoli heads. Additionally, Dr. Muñoz used the opportunity to share with the International Society for Selenium Research the current research that he is conducting in collaboration with an international public-private consortium funded by the European Union (Se-bioFORtified ALfaLfa for Se-enriched Dairy products, Se4All). This research is related to the development of dairy products enriched with organic selenium through the biofortification of alfalfa plants for dairy cow feed, with the goal of producing functional foods.
Furthermore, Dr. Muñoz was an honored guest of both the Thai and Chinese governments during the establishment of “International Selenium Friends’ Day,” which commemorates the discovery of the chemical element selenium in 1817 by the Swedish scientist Mr. Jöns Jakob Berzelius. This event, attended by government officials from both nations, as well as businessmen and researchers, led to agreements aimed at enhancing international research and development related to selenium with the main objective of reducing deficiencies of this essential nutrient in global diets.