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October 24th, 2018 / SciDev.net

Biological pesticides are safer to humans and the environment than synthetic chemicals.
Roger Day, CABI

Garlic, oranges, chillies and sex pheromones are among the potentially viable natural control measures that could be used against fall armyworm, according to a study.

Researchers have identified a number of pesticides derived from natural materials such as animals, plants, bacteria, and certain minerals – also known as biopesticides – that are safe, sustainable and effective against the fall armyworm in Africa.

Fall armyworm is devastating crops across the continent. Last year, Ghanaian farmers experienced an estimated 45 per cent loss and in Zambia there was 40 per cent loss from the destructive pest.

The annual total production loss was 8.5 to 21 million tonnes, valued at US$250 – US$630 million, says a UK’s Department for International Development commissioned study.

Center for Agriculture Bioscience International (CABI, the parent organisation of SciDev.Net) experts in a study identified 50 such products registered in 30 countries globally and selected 23 which included for safety assessment and accessibility to farmers.
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