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Cucumber green mottle mosaic virus could have entered Queensland through imported seeds – ABC News (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)

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Ccucumber green mottle virus could have entered Queensland through imported seeds

 

Posted 3 May 2017, 3:18pmWed 3 May 2017, 3:18pm

Biosecurity authorities are trying to figure out how a fruit and vegetable rotting disease broke out in Queensland, but have initial suspicions it was through imported seed.

Farmers from the Bundaberg region are angry cucumber green mottle mosaic virus (CGMMV) has recently been discovered on five local properties, owned by two growers.

CGMMV causes internal rot and discolouration in some cucurbit family fruit and vegetables, and its discovery comes months after an outbreak of white spot disease decimated the aquaculture industry in south-east Queensland.

Biosecurity Queensland spokesman Mike Ashton said the virus was not harmful to humans, but could ravage parts of the agriculture industry if a widespread outbreak occurs.

He said there was a possibility the virus was brought onto the infected farms by imported seeds.

That is considering the businesses operate independently and do not share personnel and equipment.

“That kind of increases the risk that perhaps it was seed that was the source of the introduction,” he said.

“It’s highly unlikely that we’ll ever be able to pinpoint exactly how it got introduced.”

“We’re certainly doing tracing investigations to try and identify the source.”

Farmers like Gino Marcon are angry there has been an outbreak of another virus, and are switching to less risky crops.

Mr Marcon normally grows a wide range of vegetables on his farm, but this year, he is only growing tomatoes to avoid CGMMV.

“We’ve actually stopped growing cucumbers, we’ve sort of got a wait-and-see attitude at the moment,” Mr Marcon said.

“We’re a bit worried that the disease may affect our zucchini production, so we’ve switched over to 100 per cent tomato production in our greenhouses.”

He blamed biosecurity authorities for the outbreak.

“We’ve lost confidence in the system and that’s the biosecurity system,” Mr Marcon said.

“We think it’s not broken, it’s shredded to bits. It’s simply not working.

“I think the whole system needs to be overhauled, we’re not getting value for money for the money being allocated to biosecurity.

“[Politicians] need to look long and hard at the whole system and change it.”

Mr Ashton rejects the allegation that the system has failed.

“We have managed to restrict the disease to a very small number of properties in Queensland,” he said.

“Unlike the Northern Territory and increasingly so in Western Australia where the disease has become quite established.”

There have been previous outbreaks of CGMMV in the Territory and WA, and an isolated case at Charters Towers in North Queensland in 2015.

Biosecurity Queensland hope the Charters Towers farm will be declared clear of the virus later this year.

The Federal Agriculture Department introduced mandatory imported seed testing to try and combat CGMMV in 2014.

In a statement, the department said it uses a sample size more than four times the size (9,400 seeds) than that used internationally (2,000).

It said that gave a high level of confidence in the results.

Topics: pest-management, rural, quarantine, crop-harvesting, agricultural-policy, vegetables, activism-and-lobbying, agricultural-crops, fruit, fruits, bundaberg-4670, qld

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The FAO estimates that up to 40% of global crop yields are reduced each year due to the damage caused by pests (FAO, 2015). Crop losses have a huge impact on the livelihoods of smallholder farmers. They result in less food for them and their families and a lower income for spending on education and […]

via Pest Risk Information Service for sub-Saharan Africa — The Plantwise Blog

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New BlightCast foresees risk of aggressive blight

Potato growers will have a better opportunity to predict blight risks, and tailor their proactive fungicide programme to specific seasonal challenges this year.
The new Syngenta BlightCast, launching for the 2017 season next week, uses local weather forecasts and sophisticated disease modelling algorithms to predict blight risk for up to five days ahead – enabling growers and agronomists to plan strategies more effectively.
Now, BlightCast has included three prediction models: one for conventional Smith Periods; a New Criteria of blight development at lower temperatures and, new for 2017, a forecast using the Hutton Criteria proposed to model strains of blight capable of developing at shorter periods of90% relative humidity.
Syngenta Potato Technical Manager, Douglas Dyas, pointed out that websites or information systems that simply report historical data of weather conditions, when blight might have already infected, have a limited role in proactive disease management.
“With BlightCast you get a prediction of blight risks with the chance to select appropriate strategies to prevent infection,” he advised. “It has always been the most forward-thinking system, and has continued to improve to reflect developments in our understanding of this disease.”
Douglas recalled frequent reports in recent seasons of blight incidence occurring in crops, even when weather conditions had indicated no Smith Periods. BlightCast is designed to be better equipped to reflect in-field conditions, where temperatures and humidity within a dense irrigated crop canopy, for example, could be significantly more conducive to infection and development.
“An improved understanding of risk allows growers to target Revus timings to offer the best and longest protection from each application,” he advised.
“It also remains crucial to stay fully aware of blight risk when attention turns to Alternaria treatments,” advocated Douglas. “BlightCast can help ensure growers get the best performance from Amphore Plus and tank mix combinations of Amistar plus Revus or Shirlan.”
Application timing   
To further aid practical blight treatment programmes, BlightCast can also be used in combination with Syngenta Spray Window Forecast – which indicates potential opportunities for in-field application over the next seven days.
“In recent years many growers’ blight programmes have been severely disrupted by persistent strong winds or prolonged wet weather that has prevented application,” warned Syngenta Application Specialist, James Thomas.
“If the Spray Window Forecast sees problems arising, it can be the trigger to get preventative treatments on earlier, and better utilise the long-lasting effects of Revus if future treatments are delayed,” he advised.
James pointed out that the Spray Window Forecast also provides a guide of the timing to utilise low-drift nozzle technology to increase application opportunities in catchy conditions and get blight fungicides onto the crop.
“When conditions are difficult, the practical advantages of Revus’ low application rate to enable faster sprayer turnaround – and its unrivalled rainfastness to ensure protection is locked onto the leaf – is a real benefit for growers,” he added.
For more information:
Mark Britton
Syngenta
Tel: +44 01223 883400

Publication date: 4/21/2017

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U.K.: Drones to tackle fruit fly spread on soft fruit farms – FreshFruitPortal.com

April 10 , 2017

Scientists at Scotland’s University of Aberdeen are using drone technology to create a new monitoring system for the fruit fly Drosophila suzukii. 

The drones will detect the pests much earlier than traditional methods by flying over “sticky traps” where the fruit fly can be identified from the air. Imaging capturing and processing systems will be developed to automatically differentiate fruit flies from other pests.

Also known as Spotted Wing Drosophila, the fruit fly has become a serious threat to soft fruit growers since arriving in the U.K. from Europe in 2012. Over the last few years it has affected several crops including strawberries, raspberries and grapes.

The three-year drone project aims to hone in on early detection, altering growers so they can take swift action to prevent crop damage, and improve upon the current monitoring methods which are time-consuming and costly.

Dr David Green, from the University of Aberdeen, explains how the Drosophila suzukii spreads rapidly and early detection is key to containing the devastating pest which has been found on farms in England’s key soft fruit growing regions in the south-east and as far north as Dundee, Scotland.

“One of the main challenges of our work will be developing a method that automatically identifies the presence of the fly among other pests. Our Dutch partners at the University of Wageningen are specialists in image processing, and our aim is to develop an image-capturing and processing system that can recognise the fly and carry out an automatic count in order to determine the density of the infestation.

“Ultimately, our goal is to develop a system which has real value for soft fruit growers – many of whom operate on tight margins – that can help protect their livelihoods.”

The project is funded by the Department for Environment, Food & Rural Affairs (Defra), also involves Dr Johannes Fahrentrapp at the Zurich University of Applied Sciences in Switzerland and Dr Lammert Kooistra the University of Wageningen in the Netherlands.

Photo: http://www.shutterstock.com

www.freshfruitportal.com

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As part of its mass extension activities for 2016, Plantwise Ghana rolled out a four-week  prevalent in the project’s five intervention regions in Ghana. The campaign, which took place between September and October 2016, involved five radio stations noted for […]

via Plantwise Ghana Educates Farmers on Major Crop Pest and Diseases — The Plantwise Blog

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FreshPlaza

http://www.freshplaza.com/article/168323/Argentina-Tool-to-control-potato-pests-and-diseases

Argentina: Tool to control potato pests and diseases

Growing potatoes increases the pressure of pests and diseases, which usually results in the intensive use of plant protection products. To avoid unnecessary applications, a team of specialists from INTA’s Balcarce Integrated Unit and the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences of the National University of Mar del Plata, designed a tool to help producers make decisions. The tool, which is called the SGC Calidad Papa (SGC Quality Potato), is a quality management system that aims at maintaining the potato crop’s health, and was tested in fields with high levels of production.

Gladys Clemente, who is a professor of Phytopathology at the FCA-UNMdP and a researcher at the Balcarce Integrated Unit said: “Usually, producers make fungicide applications based on preset calendar schemes to manage diseases.”

The potato is an inten! sive crop that “is grown in large areas and that requires intensive applications to prevent the development of diseases that can cause major losses, such as potato blight,” Clemente said.

“Decision-making, tailored to the crops real needs, reduces potato production costs by reducing the number of fungicide applications, protects the environment, and ensures producers obtain safe food,” Clemente argued.

According to FAO, the potato is the third biggest food crop, after rice, and wheat. In fact, it occupies a prominent place in the diet of the Argentinians, who consume an average of nearly 60 kilos of potatoes per year.

According to Clemente, the SGC Calidad Papa system will allow producers to manage the pests and diseases that affect the crop at any time of the production cycle in an appropriate and correct manner. “This tool allows producers to make decisions regarding the application of phytosanitary products based on technical-agronomic knowledge acquired from the permanent monitoring of the crops, in combination with risk forecasts, and laboratory diagnosis,” she said.

“Apart form field monitorings and laboratory diagnosis, the quality management system includes a record of meteorologic! al variables in situ to calculate the risk of diseases,” Clemente said. “By using a very clear graph, which is similar to a stop light, we send reports to the producers or consultant warning them about the current possibility of disease development and a forecast for the next five days,” she added.

This information is reported through several weekly newsletters and helps producers identify the right time to make the applications. “Our goal is to provide this information to other potato producing regions of the country. To do this, we are working on the creation of networks with professionals from other INTA units and Agronomy faculties,” the specialist said.

Due to its impact, this project received $35,000 from the Innovar Awards in the Applied Research category. Specialists Marcelo Atilio Huarte, Maria Cecilia Bedogni, Andrea Eugenia Salvalaggio, Marino Marcelo Puricelli, Sebastian Emilio Boracci, and Veronica Elizabeth Crovo also participated in the research.

Recently, SGC Calidad Papa was presented at the Hackaton Agro held in Tandil, on December 3 and 4. The project was also invited to participate in the First Symposium on Bioeconomics of the South Central Pampeana Region, to be held in the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires.

Source: infocampo.com.ar

Publication date: 12/16/2016

From PestNet

Grahame Jackson
24 Alt street
Queens Park
NSW 2022
Australia

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FreshPlaza

http://www.freshplaza.com/article/168323/Argentina-Tool-to-control-potato-pests-and-diseases

Growing potatoes increases the pressure of pests and diseases, which usually results in the intensive use of plant protection products. To avoid unnecessary applications, a team of specialists from INTA’s Balcarce Integrated Unit and the Faculty of Agricultural Sciences of the National University of Mar del Plata, designed a tool to help producers make decisions. The tool, which is called the SGC Calidad Papa (SGC Quality Potato), is a quality management system that aims at maintaining the potato crop’s health, and was tested in fields with high levels of production.
Gladys Clemente, who is a professor of Phytopathology at the FCA-UNMdP and a researcher at the Balcarce Integrated Unit said: “Usually, producers make fungicide applications based on preset calendar schemes to manage diseases.”
The potato is an intensive crop that “is grown in large areas and that requires intensive applications to prevent the development of diseases that can cause major losses, such as potato blight,” Clemente said.
“Decision-making, tailored to the crops real needs, reduces potato production costs by reducing the number of fungicide applications, protects the environment, and ensures producers obtain safe food,” Clemente argued.
According to FAO, the potato is the third biggest food crop, after rice, and wheat. In fact, it occupies a prominent place in the diet of the Argentinians, who consume an average of nearly 60 kilos of potatoes per year.
According to Clemente, the SGC Calidad Papa system will allow producers to manage the pests and diseases that affect the crop at any time of the production cycle in an appropriate and correct manner. “This tool allows producers to make decisions regarding the application of phytosanitary products based on technical-agronomic knowledge acquired from the permanent monitoring of the crops, in combination with risk forecasts, and laboratory diagnosis,” she said.
“Apart form field monitorings and laboratory diagnosis, the quality management system includes a record of meteorological variables in situ to calculate the risk of diseases,” Clemente said. “By using a very clear graph, which is similar to a stop light, we send reports to the producers or consultant warning them about the current possibility of disease development and a forecast for the next five days,” she added.
This information is reported through several weekly newsletters and helps producers identify the right time to make the applications. “Our goal is to provide this information to other potato producing regions of the country. To do this, we are working on the creation of networks with professionals from other INTA units and Agronomy faculties,” the specialist said.
Due to its impact, this project received $35,000 from the Innovar Awards in the Applied Research category. Specialists Marcelo Atilio Huarte, Maria Cecilia Bedogni, Andrea Eugenia Salvalaggio, Marino Marcelo Puricelli, Sebastian Emilio Boracci, and Veronica Elizabeth Crovo also participated in the research.
Recently, SGC Calidad Papa was presented at the Hackaton Agro held in Tandil, on December 3 and 4. The project was also invited to participate in the First Symposium on Bioeconomics of the South Central Pampeana Region, to be held in the Autonomous City of Buenos Aires.
Source: infocampo.com.ar

 

Publication date: 12/16/2016

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