Global control principles and strategies for potato and sweetpotato pests and diseases

Biological controls use living organisms, such as parasitoids, nematodes, and fungi, to control pests, diseases, and weeds that attack crops.

This theme will investigate the resilience of agoecosystems and develop methods to stabilize those systems and pro-poor IPM strategies that will not degrade the environment. The emphasis will be on the development of insect-pest and disease control principles with global application.

The theme includes three outputs oriented to monitoring insect pests and disease distribution and economic losses in major potato and sweetpotato cropping systems and providing respective data in a common database accompanied by automatically produced risk maps. In addition, an inventory, collection, characterization and documentation of beneficial organisms of key potato and sweetpotato pests will be performed and their potential use in different agroecosystems assessed.

Lessons will be learnt on principles and strategies for a global and sustainable management of potato and sweetpotato insect pests and diseases that will be made available to national programs and farmers. Ultimately the development of a model to estimate the effects of management on potato-seed born pathogens will be of great benefit for decision-making.

About integrated pest management (IPM)

The use of chemical pesticides on potato and sweetpotato is increasing in developing countries, as farmers intensify production and expand cultivation into areas and planting seasons beyond the crop’s traditional range. The chemicals used are frequently highly toxic and applied with little or no protective equipment. And they are expensive: developing countries spend about US $300 million per year on pesticides for potato alone.

Late blight symptons

IPM aims to maintain pest populations at acceptable levels and keep pesticides and other interventions to levels that are economically justified and safe for human health and the environment.

CIP research focuses on understanding factors that influence the distribution and population dynamics of pests; developing models to assess pest risks under climate change and intensified cropping; designing and evaluating IPM components, particularly focusing on biological controls; understanding how technologies perform “in the field’; and defining strategies to scale up IPM.

More information

Main contacts

Dr. Jürgen Kroschel

Head Agroecology / IPM, CIP-Lima
Crop Management and Production Systems Division
T: +51-1 349-6017 ext. 3070
F: +51-1 317-5326

Dr. Henri Tonnang

Insect modeling, CIP-Lima
Crop Management and Production Systems Division
T: +51-1 349-6017 ext. 3071
F: +51-1 317-5326

Dr. Marc Sporleder

IPM Expert, CIP-Nepal
c/o International Centre for Integrated Mountain Development (ICIMOD)
G.P.O. Box 3226, Khumaltar, Kathmandu, Nepal
T: +977 1 5003222 ext. 320
F: +977 1 5003299, 5003277

Pests, potato, sweetpotato