VIII International Congress on Cactus Pear and Cochineal

October 28-31, 2013 - Palermo (Italy)



Click on picture to enlarge


Click on picture to enlarge

The Symposium, held from 28 to 31 October 2013 in Palermo, Italy, is organized by the International Society of Horticultural Science (ISHS) in conjunction with The FAO-ICARDA Cactusnet, the Italian Society for Horticultural Science (SOI) and the Department of Agricultural and Forestry Sciences of the University of Palermo. It will attract international experts on cactus pear and cochineal, as well as researchers and producers from many countries.
Previous ISHS International Congresses on Cactus Pear and Cochineal were held in Chile (1992), Republic of South Africa (1996), Tunisia (2000), Mexico (2004), Brazil (2007), and Morocco (2010).
The objectives of the VIII International Cactus Pear and Cochineal Congress meet those of the FAO-ICARDA Cactusnet bringing together scientists, producers, operators, users to share new research findings and know-how and to promote enterprises for the benefit of the rural poor.
The VIIth International Congress includes (this is just an example):

  • Scientific sessions introduced by key note speakers,
  • One day field visit to show the cactus pear industry in Sicily,
  • VIIth General Meeting of the FAO-ICARDA International Technical Cooperation Network on Cactus Pear
  • An optional 2-day Post-Congress tour give the opportunity to discover culture and traditions of Sicily.

Symposium topics
Italy is among the world’s foremost producers of cactus pears, and the Symposium is an outstanding occasion for all those involved in research, production and marketing of this fruit. The main topics under discussion will concern:

  • Genetic Resources and Breeding
  • Fruit Production: Ecophysiology, Orchard and post harvest management
  • Forage production and utilization
  • Cochineal breeding and utilization
  • Agroindustrial and Pharmaceutical uses
  • Economy & Marketing
  • General Meeting of FAO-ICARDA International Cooperation Network on Cactus Pear and cochineal (CACTUSNET)

The list may not be exhaustive, and both organising and scientific committees reserve the right to amend the list as necessary

Oral/poster presentations
Abstracts should be submitted for oral or poster presentation. The final decision on type of presentation will be decided by the scientific committee.

Instruction to Authors
Delegates presenting posters/oral papers are reminded that a full paper must be submitted to the symposium conveners no later than the last day of the Symposium. Instructions to authors can be found on the ISHS website, click here to go directly to the web page (

Instructions to authors - abstracts
Abstracts should not exceed 300 words, and should be submitted in 12pt Times New Roman to the symposium secretariat ( as an email attachment in a MSWord format (.doc)  by the end of May 2013. Papers accepted  must have at least one author registered at the Symposium to guarantee publication in the Acta Horticulturae volume. The title of the abstract (bold) should be followed by the author/s' name, surname and institution or affiliation. Please download the abstract form and use it to submit your abstract.
Abstract form

The abstract text should not include subheadings, tables, figures or references. The abstract should give a broad overview of the aims of the work, methodology, a short review of results and conclusions. At the end of the abstract, the name and email address of the corresponding author should be given, along with an indication of preferred method of presentation, i.e. oral or poster.

Instructions to Authors - proceedings
Guidelines for preparation of papers for Acta Horticulturae may be found on the ISHS website

Poster Dimensions: Poster size - A0 size (ISO 216 Paper Size system). Equivalent to 841 x 1189 mm or 33 x 46.75 inches. Poster orientation -portrait only, there are no facilities for displaying as landscape.

Language: The official language of the symposium is English

University of Palermo, Department of Agricultural, Environmental and Food Science
Viale delle Scienze, 90128 Palermo

How to reach Palermo

Palermo airport ‘Falcone e Borsellino, is located approximately 20 kilometres away from downtown.  Many national and international airlines, including “low cost” companies, fly to Palermo and to the closest ‘Birgi’ airport in Trapani 60 km away from Palermo.
If you are planning to arrive at Palermo Airport, please communicate the details of your arrival (

The Central station in Palermo is located at 10 min walking from downtown and the Congress venue and 45 km from the Airport to which is regularly connected (every 30 minutes). The metro connects the central Station to the Congress Venue (Orleans Station).

The land transport service connects the airport of Palermo to downtown and the central Station (every 30 minutes).

Here some phone numbers for taxi service:
Autoradiotaxi +39091513311
Radio Taxi Trinacria +390916878

  Car Rental
At the Palermo airport there are several companies operating for car rental.

Grand Hotel Piazza Borsa****
Via dei Cartari 18 , Palermo, 90133, Italy
Tel. +39091320075
Distance from Congress venue: 2,2 km

Excelsior Hilton Palermo****
Via Marchese Ugo 3, Palermo, 90139 Italy
Tel. +390917909001
Distance from Congress venue: 3,5 km

Grand Hotel Et Des Palmes****
Via Roma 398, Palermo, 90139 Italy
Tel. +39 0916028111
Distance from Congress venue: 3 km

Hotel Giardino Inglese****
Via della Libertà 63, Palermo, 90143 Italy
Tel. +390916251295
Distance from Congress venue: 6,4 km

Hotel Quinto Canto ****
Corso Vittorio Emanuele, 310 , Palermo, 90134 Italy
Tel.+39 091584913
Distance from Congress venue: 1,8 km

Hotel Joli***
Via Michele Amari, 11 Palermo, 90139, Italy
Tel.+39 0916111765
Distance from Congress venue: 3,1 km

Albergo Athenaeum***
Via Giannettino Luigi 4 , Palermo, 90128 Italy
Tel. +390916523529
Distance from Congress venue: 0,4 km

Hotel Orleans***
Via Monfenera, 106,  Palermo, 90128, Italy
Tel. +390916688940
Distance from Congress venue: 0.5 km

 Columbia Hotel**
Via del Celso, 31, Palermo, 90134, Italy
Tel. +390916113777
Distance from Congress venue: 5.5 km

Casa Marconi
Via Monfenera,14,  Palermo, 90128, Italy
Tel. +390916570611
Distance from Congress venue: 0.5 km

B&B Az Zahar
Via del Bersagliere, 30,  Palermo, 90143, Italy
Tel.  +393476351855 / +393290424748
Distance from Congress venue: 6.0 km

Main Sponsors

Main Sponsors La goccia d'oro Feudotto Ecofruit