For one hundred years the Netherlands' Plant Protection Service has been operating in an incessantly changing environment. One hundred years ago a new era of production and trade in agricultural commodities began. Technological improvements based on the steam engine, and later on refrigeration techniques, enabled bringing cheap food from all over the world onto traditional food markets in Europe and Asia. Meanwhile a new way of thinking in agricultural policy making had been developing. The age of "laissez faire" was over. New policies were introduced in many countries of the world: direct forms of protection; improvements to agriculture through education; research; (infra-)structural and quality management. Transport and communication techniques improved tremendously during the 20th century and this tendency is expected to continue. The Internet creates virtual markets world-wide, companies are to an increasing extent operating on a global scale, using the advantages of various climate zones. Such developments create new challenges for international policy making and institutions conducting the management of international trade flows. This book presents an overview of developments in plant protection policies in the 20th century and the prospects for the coming decade.
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