Oct. 8, 2018
By Leonardo Gottems, reporter for AgroPages
A study conducted by the Brazilian Agricultural Research Corporation (Embrapa), together with their international partners, is proposing a regulatory change to the Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Supply (MAPA) to allow for increased regional control of the insect Diaphorina citri, which causes Huanglongbing (HLB), or Greening. The disease is one of the most damaging to citrus in Brazil.
According to Paulo Parizzi, the general coordinator of Plant Protection of the Department of Plant Protection, attached to the Secretariat of Agricultural Defense of the MAPA, the Normative Instruction Map No. 53, of October 16, 2008 talks about the containment of the disease, but not specifically insect control. He says, however, that the ministry understands the importance of new research in this area.
"The research is fundamental in generating technical knowledge for the decision making used in the Map. We fully agree with the study that control of the HLB vector is essential to contain the disease. We have to find a legal way to include this action during the revision of IN 53/2008," he said.
Current studies on the subject indicate that any production unit with at least 28% of trees with symptoms should be completely removed. According to Embrapa Cassava and Fruticultura (BA) researcher Francisco Laranjeira, coordinator of the plant health portfolio, regional control can be of great help to producers, as it will prevent the insects from spreading.
"With this work, we have been able to show that there is a conflict in the determination to remove, from time to time, all orchards with more than 28% of symptomatic trees, as established by normative instruction. On a regional scale, we have shown that this is not enough to control the disease. It is necessary to reduce the insect-vector population. The normative instruction only acts in relation to the plant and is silent about the vector ", he added.