ISTA Workshop on Seed Sampling and Quality Assurance in Seed Sampling | 9-12 Kasım 2015

SANSOR (South African National Seed Organization) and PANNAR are looking forward to hosting you at the ISTA Workshop on ‘Seed Sampling and Quality Assurance in Seed Sampling’. We are planning to host 2 workshops. The first will be held from Monday 9 November to Thursday 12 November 2015 in Johannesburg, South Africa.  The second workshop will be held at the same venue from 23 to 26 November. 

Marianne Brown
Quality Manager 
South Africa  
T:  +27 (0) 33 4139642     

Main Lecturers 
Eddie Goldschagg, (Chair of the ISTA Bulking and Sampling Committee)                                           
Gerry Hall (Member of the ISTA Bulking and Sampling Committee) 
Max Soepboer (Former Vice-Chair of the ISTA Bulking and Sampling Committee) 
Guest Lecturer: Leena Pietilä, Lotta Claesson and Dot Vittrup (Member of the ISTA Bulking and Sampling Committee)   

Aim of the Workshop  
The aim of the workshop is to provide an overview of seed sampling and aspects of quality assurance in relation to seed sampling for a range of species. The workshop will provide a forum to discuss seed sampling in general as well as the opportunity to have specific questions relating to seed sampling methodologies discussed. The workshop will focus on practical exercises, providing an opportunity to use different sampling equipment, and will include practicals for the evaluation and examination of seed samplers. All workshop attendees will be expected to take part in the practical sessions, including the practice examinations.   

Target Group
The workshop is for persons who are or are going to be actively involved in sampling according to the ISTA Rules, as well as their supervisors and quality managers, and those monitoring seed samplers.  

The workshop teaching is through formal lectures, practical work and a series of exercises where participants will work in groups.  Topics included in the workshop include: 

  • Introduction to seed sampling methods (lectures)
  • Principles behind seed sampling, sealing bags and labelling (lectures)
  • Principles behind automatic seed sampling (lectures)
  • Sampling containers, bags, boxes (practicals)
  • Dividing samples for submission to a laboratory (practicals)
  • Quality assurance in sampling (lectures and practicals)
  • Evaluation and examination (written and practical)
The workshop registration fee will include an excursion to see some areas of interest and an official Workshop dinner.  

The workshop will take place at The Kopanong Hotel and Conference Centre, Located in Johannesburg, 30 km from the city centre in a tranquil country estate. It truly evokes the "spirit of Africa”. Picturesque gardens and a quiet atmosphere add to the harmonious feeling of this unique establishment.   

Nearby attractions: 
Cradle of Humankind World Heritage Site , only 45 minutes from Johannesburg, nestling in the peaceful Sterkfontein rural valley, lays the Cradle of Humankind  and the world's richest hominid site.  Maropeng is the official visitor centre of the Cradle of Humankind and the Sterkfontein Caves. An hour’s drive from Johannesburg and Pretoria, the Sterkfontein Caves are world famous for their fossil finds and a well-known visitor destination.  City of Johannesburg tour: travel Johannesburg at your own pace. Hop on and off at any City Tour stops and experience the best of Johannesburg.  Constitution Hill is a symbol of South Africa’s unique and triumphant democracy. Visitors to this complex will likely be struck by how South Africa has transformed emblems of its repressive past into present-day custodians of democracy and freedom. The Origins Centre located at the University of Witswatersrand, Johannesburg explores mankind's evolutionary journey and emergence in southern Africa. Explore the discovery of our ape-like ancestors in the Cradle of Humankind World Heritage site and the first rock art paintings of the San people.   Soweto Tours gives you the chance to see some of the sites that have made Soweto's name famous around the world - including tailored visits to Soccer City, The Hector Pieterson Museum, Mandela House Museum and Baragwanath Precinct. Lesedi Cultural Village is set amidst rocky hills and bushveld less than an hour’s drive from Johannesburg on the way to Sun City. Expect possibly the best authentic African experience in the country, one that provides warmth, depth and insight into our Rainbow Nation and its colourful diversity of cultures.   

For further information on Joburg and South Africa please visit the website.   

The number of participants per workshop is a minimum of 20, without which the workshop will be cancelled and limited to a maximum of 25. When registering, please indicate if you would be available to attend the other workshop should your preferred one be cancelled or over- or under-subscribed. 
The registration includes: participation in the workshop and all supporting literature, tea and coffee breaks, lunch, travel to the practical work venues, the workshop dinner and a tourist excursion. It does not include accommodation or meals other than those specified.   

Registration Costs:
ISTA Members USD 800
ISTA Non-Members USD 1200

Deadline: 31.08.2015

If you would like to attend the workshop please fill in the registration form. An invoice will be sent to you, which has to be paid before the participation confirmation will be generated. Please indicate any dietary requirements during registration. 
All payments are required prior to the 1st of September, 2015 in USD and payable to ISTA. 

Please note: 
For cancellations made before 30 September 2015 registration fees are refundable less a CHF 50 administration fee. For cancellations made after 30 September 2015 registration fees are non-refundable.   

The organisers have reserved rooms, at the Kopanong Conference Centre R1073 per night including dinner, bed and breakfast for a single occupancy room.  All rooms are en-suite. For reservations please contact (+27) 11 749 0000 or visit the website The delegates must just inform the reservations office that they will be part of the ISTA Conference in order to qualify for the group rates. The delegates will be required to pay a deposit for the first night. The balance will be payable on arrival.  Should you choose to arrange accommodation elsewhere you will be responsible for your own travel arrangements to and from your accommodation.  Please note there is no public transport from Johannesburg city centre to Kopanong Conference Centre.   

From the airport:  The best way to reach Kopanong Conference Centre from OR Tambo airport is by taxi. Taxis leave from outside the arrivals exit and will cost approximately R360. Kopanong are also able to arrange airport transfers. Please arrange this directly with the hotel.    

The month of November is characterized by mild to warm days with the mean temperature somewhat warm at 19 °C (66.2 °F). Afternoons can be fairly hot with average high temperatures reaching 25 °C (77 °F). Overnight temperatures are generally mild with an average low of 13 °C (55.4 °F). In November the variation/ range of diurnal average temperatures is 12 °C (21.6 °F). The weather in November is generally relatively dry but you can expect occasional rain.       

Currency and Exchange rate
The currency in South Africa is Rands (R) with an average conversion factor of 0.08 to the USD.  

Visitors are advised to check with the‎ for visa requirements.  A letter of invitation can be issued by the ISTA Secretariat to registered participants requiring a visa.