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Cotton production threatened by plague in Minas Gerais, Brazilqrcode

Dec. 16, 2013

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Dec. 16, 2013
One of the crops most affected by Helicoverpa armigera in Minas Gerais, Brazil is the cotton. The situation is critical because the presence of the pest in the crops is large and the estimated production growth may be frustrated due to the caterpillar, according to Amipa’s CEO (Minas Gerais Association of Cotton Producers), Licio Pena.

According to Pena, during last cotton season only the losses caused by the plague were approximately R$ 15 million in Minas Gerais, Brazil. The planting of cotton in the state started recently, but in neighboring crops, such as soybeans and corn, it has been detected the presence of the caterpillar.

"We are concerned about the infestation to be too large. The use of defensive started and some products used to fighting the caterpillar are now missing. Amipa is adopting various measures to try to control the Helicoverpa to spread, with light traps and synthetic pheromone of the female moth. The goal is to identify the areas of greatest infestation and then plot a strategy,"says Pena.

It will be created a biofactory in Uberlandia that should be running by mid-2014. The idea is to develop joint work between Amipa and Embrapa(Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation) for the development of biological products such as wasps, which are natural predators of Helicoverpa armigera’s eggs.

According to the National Supply Company (Conab), the initial expectation of 2013/14 cotton production is a volume of 31.5 thousand tons of cotton lint, which will represent an increase of 19.5% of the previously harvested volume in Minas Gerais. In the last harvest, the volume produced was approximately 26,000 tons. In the period it was registered losses of 10%, nearly R$ 15 million, due to infestation of the caterpillar.

The possible production increase is due to the recovery of domestic prices observed over 2013 by limited supply versus the demand, as well as higher prices in international market with perspective to remain at favorable levels, besides caterpillar control, of course.

Source: AgroNews

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