Officials decide upon 25 pesticides for combating armyworms 06-29-2019

As one of the severe cross-border migratory pests in China, fall armyworms have now spread to 18 of China’s provinces including regions and municipalities, with over 1.273 thousand hectares (19.1 thousand mu) of land suffering from the damage. It was first detected in the southwestern provinces of Yunnan and Guangxi in early January. The pest originally comes from Southeast Asian countries. 

Fall armyworms, which have strong fertility and eat various crops, migrate quickly and infest widely. As a result, it is difficult to keep control of them. They have now been damaging corn, sugarcane, circus fruits, bananas and other types of food in China, which “severely threatens the agriculture and grain production security of China,” the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural affairs (MOA) said.

The MOA decides on 25 pesticides and supervision to fight the fall armyworms

The Ministry of Agriculture and Rural affairs had announced a statement on solving the problem of fall armyworms with appropriate pesticides on its website on 3 June. 25 pesticides for emergency use were recommended to deal with the problem of armyworms in 18 provinces. Furthermore, they asked local authorities to guide farmers in the use of these products in terms of local conditions. Chlorfenapyr, acephate and other pesticides were mentioned in the statement. The emergency use of these pesticides to combat armyworms will last until the end of next year, the ministry said.

The statement also mentions to strengthen the control of emergency pesticide products. The local agricultural departments should supervise enterprises, strengthening casual inspections, and impose relevant punishment in accordance of the law on those which commit illegal acts such as selling fake insecticide products so as to ensure the quality of these products. 

The statement also emphasizes to enhance the monitoring and early warning system for fall armyworms and provide more training classes for farmers. Guidance should be offered on the spot so that farmers have a chance of learning how to choose an appropriate pesticide product according to the circumstances. Farmers also need to pay more attention to the crops with pesticides. Once they find that the crops are growing unhealthy under the treatment of pesticides, they have to report it to the local agricultural department.

Latin America sees acephate as the most successful pesticide against the fall armyworms

Cures for fall armyworms can also be found in Latin America, Africa and India, regions where farmers continuously become victims of these destructive pests. In Latin America, one of the most effective pesticides has proven to be acephate, which is also listed in the statement this time as one of the 25 pesticides to combat armyworms.

Practical results in Latin America show that acephate, commonly used as one of the ingredients in most traditional pesticides, can actively prevent armyworms from damaging vast farmlands. Only 1.12 kilograms should be applied in each hectare of land.

In China, acephate is often a composition of many pesticides on the market and other advantage of acephate is that it can be used safely. Additionally, using chlorantraniliprole and novaluron as pesticides is also good to fight against fall armyworms. According to some research, applying 0.88 kilograms of novaluron in each hectare of land for seven days is as effective as using acephate.

For more information about China's crop market, please have a look at our monthly newsletter Crop Protection China Monthly Report.

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