Nov. 12, 2019
The research trials for the final year of Agriculture and Horticulture Development Board’s crop protection research programme, SCEPTREplus, have been announced, following consultation with industry.
Control options for 15 new pest and disease targets across all horticulture production sectors will be reviewed and tested; the £1.65m project ends in 2020.
SCEPTREplus was set up to deliver new options for plant protection products for the minority horticulture crops; it has secured extensions of authorisations of minor use (EAMUs) for 13 products so far.
Trials in the fourth year of the project will include: control options for flea beetle in brassica crops and ways to manage Mussel scale in apple and pear. For tomato crops, trials will take place on the mirid bug, and macrolophus and spidermite control will be tested in hardy nursery crops. There will also be a review of Leafhopper control for outdoor herb crops.
Following the loss of thiram and metalaxyl-M, new seed treatments for different crops to control diseases such as spinach leaf spot, leek damping-off and onion neck rot will also be trialled.
Joe Martin, Crop Protection Senior Scientist at AHDB, said: “We are only testing plant protection products that we understand have a high chance of becoming available to growers following the authorisation process.
“Each of the products is considered with integrated control options in mind, to support a sustainable long-term future for UK horticulture crop protection.”
Since the project started in 2017, 52 work packages have been undertaken on a range of targets. Several applications are now underway for further authorisation.