About the NCPN
Diseases of vegetatively propagated crops that are caused by viruses and virus-like agents can severely affect yield, appearance and taste of fruit as well as plant longevity. Viruses and virus-like agents are often difficult to detect in propagation material, such as rootstocks and budwood, and as a consequence it is easy to inadvertently bring these damaging pathogens to a field where they weren’t present before. Once these diseases are established they are incurable and it is often very difficult to prevent them from spreading. The best and primary tool for avoiding diseases caused by virus and virus-like pathogens is prevention by using clean propagation materials.
The National Clean Plant Network (NCPN) brings together industry leaders, plant pathologists, state regulators and clean plant centers to produce and distribute healthy propagation material in the United States. It began in 2008 with fruit trees and grapes networks and now includes seven specialty crop networks - berries, citrus, fruit trees, grapes, hops, roses and sweetpotatoes. The National Clean Plant Network (NCPN) is a voluntary association and is funded by the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) under three branches - Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS), Agriculture Research Service (ARS) and National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA).
NCPN clean plant centers throughout the Network focus on:
Diagnostic and pathogen elimination services
Production of clean propagative plant material
Maintenance of foundation blocks of pathogen-tested plant materials
through Clean Plants
Safeguarding and supporting specialty crops by providing a sustainable source of clean plant material through innovation, collaboration, translational science and outreach.
To establish a network of Clean Plant Centers for diagnostic and pathogen elimination services to produce clean propagative plant material and to maintain blocks of pathogen-tested plant material in sites located throughout the United States.
Clean plant material is available to states for state certification programs and to private nurseries and producers.
Network participation currently consists of 47 collaborating programs at 35 centers in 20 states.