On 25-26 October, the Forest Molecular Genetics (FMG) Programme organized a Genomic Selection Indaba hosted by York Timbers at Mbulwa Estate in Sabie, South Africa. This event marked a pivotal gathering of key players in tree improvement from various forestry companies, with a primary focus on the practical implementation of genomic selection as a breeding strategy in South Africa. The indaba served as the culmination of the Quantitative Genetics and Molecular Breeding course presented by Prof. Fikret Isik, a distinguished Fulbright Scholar who has been hosted as a sabbatical visitor in the FMG Programme in 2023.

This indaba provided a platform for discussions that delved into the integration of genomics into tree improvement practices and the broader vision of a Precision Tree Breeding Platform for South Africa's future. The event not only facilitated knowledge exchange but also enabled participants to collectively assess the current state of genomic selection strategies in South Africa.

Importantly, the Genomic Selection Indaba offered a strategic perspective on the necessary capabilities for both the FMG Programme and company breeding initiatives in South Africa. This proactive approach aimed to align with the latest international advancements in genomic breeding, ensuring that South Africa will be stretegically positioned to harness these cutting-edge technologies and innovations.