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Saturday, January 2, 2010

Integrated Pest Management in India

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According to Ministry of Agriculture, Department of Agriculture and Cooperation, Government of India - Integrated Pest Management Programme( IPM) is a broad ecological pest control approach aiming at best mix of all known pest control measures to keep the pest population below economic threshold level (ETL).It is an economically justified and sustainable system of crop protection that leads to maximum productivity with the least possible adverse impact on the total environment.

The Integrated Pest Management Programme can be defined as – “a sustainable approach of management of pest by the combination of biological, cultural, mechanical and chemical tools in a way that minimizes economic, economic, health and Environmental Risks. In other words the IPM is an “economically justified and sustainable system of protection of crops that leads to the maximum agricultural productivity with the least possible negative impacts on the natural environment”.

The Integrated Pest Management Programme (IPM) is now a worldwide programme which lays emphasis on the application of Bio-pesticides, and Bio-agents with rarest and unavoidable application of safe chemical pesticides.

Origin of the concept of IPM

The concept of Integrated Pest Management was developed by Dr. Ray Smith (1919 – 1999). He was an American Entomologist and educator, around 1950. In 1940s, Dr. Smith led a ten- year project to test his basic concept of “supervised control” of pests of alfalfa. During this project, he gathered enormous amount of economic, biological and ecological data that helped him in developing Integrated Pest Management Model.

Dr. Ray Smith worked on his project with Dr. Perry Adkisson for a long time. During this time he received cooperation from a number of International Organisations like Food And Agricultural Organisation (FAO), United Nations Environmental Programme (UNEP), and the World Bank etc. to spread his concept. He took the lead in forming the Food and Agriculture Organisation's   Panel of Experts on Integrated Pest Control in 1967 and headed this group from its inception until 1982.He worked for the expansion of concept of Integrated Pest Management on priority basis and worked directly with farmers, experts and policy makers in Latin America, Asia, Africa and assessed the needs of pest control in these regions. A key priority was expanding IPM’s philosophy and practice in developing areas and working directly with farmers, experts, and policymakers in Latin America, Asia, and Africa to specially assess the pest-control needs of those regions. He organized the FAO’s 1974 Global Project for Integrated Pest Management of Major Crops, lectured and published prolifically overseas, and consulted to USAID and the FAO on food production and pest control issues. Dr. Smith received the 1997 World Food Prize with Dr.Perry Adkissons for their shared achievement in developing and propounding the practice of Integrated Pest Management  programs by farmers across the world.

The Integrated Pest management Programme was started with a number of objectives like -Reduction of the application of Synthetic Chemical Pesticides; Evolve and apply the Environmentally Sound Practices of Pest Management; Application of safe chemical pesticides with minimal risk of human health; Re-useable return on investment; Providing consumable and safe food to consumers

Basic Principles of IPM
The IPM Programme is based on following five basic management principles – one-identification of key pests and beneficial organisms; two -defining the management unit, the Agro-ecosystem; and development of management strategy; three - establishment of economic thresholds (loss & risks); four - development of assessment techniques ; and five- evolving description of predictive pest models.

Tools for implementing the IPM programme
The IPM Programme can be implemented through monitoring, introduction of pest resistant varieties, adopting traditional and cultural practices of pest control, application of mechanical methods, introduction of biological methods, and control through the application of different chemical compounds.

Keeping tracks of the pests and their potential damage is called as pest monitoring. This provides knowledge about the current pests and crop situation. It also helps in selecting the best possible combinations of the pest management methods. Developing pest resistant varieties is an important and powerful tool for mast management. It is a continuous process. Crop plants are bred and selected when available in order to protect against key pests. Cultural practices of pest control are to be given greater importance under this programme .It includes crop production practices that make crops less susceptible to pests. Crop rotation, sowing cover crop, keeping plants in rows and leaving proper spaces between rows, planning of dates of plantation and harvesting, destruction of old crop debris etc. -are a few examples. Cultural controls are based on the biology and development processes of pests. Pests can be picked out if someone has a complete knowledge and behavior. Hand picking, installation of bird perches, mulching and installation of traps are a few examples of mechanical control. These include augmentation and conservation of natural enemies of pests such as insect predators, parasitoids, and pathogen and weed feeders. In IPM programmes, native natural enemy population is conserved and non-native agents are released with utmost caution. Under the IPM programme, safe chemical pesticides are used to keep the pest population below economically damaging levels when the pests cannot be controlled by other means. It is applied only when the pest's damaging capacity is nearing to the threshold.

Implementing and promoting pest control programme in India

The promotion of IPM in India was started as a Central Sector Scheme in 1991by the Ministry of Agriculture - Department of Agriculture & Cooperation, Government of India. In the country, it is considered as a major ecological approach towards Pest Management. It aims at mixing of all the pest control measure known so far, so as to keep the population of pests below the Economic Threshold Level (ETL).As a system of crop protection, the IPM is an economically justified programme and a sustainable system. It is accepted that the programme will lead to maximum productivity without any major adverse impact on the environment. It is a schedule of different practices having many components like – cultural, mechanical, biological and chemical methods of controlling insect pests, diseases, weeds, and rodents since the time of selection of field till the time of harvesting.

In In India the regulatory measures of Plant Quarantine have been made operational through the “Destructive Insects and Pests Act, 1914”. This act prevents the introduction of any insect, fungus, or other pest, which is or may be destructive to crops. The import of agricultural materials is regulated through Plant Quarantine (Regulation of import into India) Order; 2003[1st Amendment Order, 2007 : S.O. No. 2069 (E), dated 3rd December, 2007 (Schedule-VI, Sl.No. 410 to 525, Schedule-VII Sl.No. 288 – 289) ].This order also incorporates the provisions of New Policy on Seed Development, 1988. In wake of Sanitary and Phytosanitary agreements made under World Trade Organisation (WTO), the significance of Plant Quarantine has increased in view of Globalization and Liberalization in International Trade of plants and plant-materials. The Plant Protection Quarantine (PPQ) is a regulatory system which safeguards agriculture and natural resources from the risks associated with the entry, establishment, or spread of animal and plant pests and noxious weeds to ensure an abundant, high-quality, and varied food supply.

Neem (Azadirachta indica) is a tree of immense value in the field of traditional methods of pest control in India and abroad. It is due to its antimicrobial and insecticidal properties that it is in application since time immemorial in the traditional Indian society. Its every part ranging from root to seeds is important. Its leaves are used with grains during storage to protect from pests. Its leaves are also used in the form of a layer on the bed of a person suffering from small pox. A number od alkaloids have been extracted out its leaves and seeds and are used in various medicines. It is due to the pesticidal properties of Neem that India had to pass through a patent-dispute with a country for its protection.Azadirachta indica is a small and dense canopied shady tree taxonomically belonging to family Meliaceae. It is native to India, Bangladesh, Srilanka, Pakistan, Myanmar and Malaysia. Its vernacular names in different languages are - Neem (Hindi, Urdu and Bengali), Nimm (Punjabi), Arya Veppu (malayam)), Azad Dirakht (Persian), Nimba (Sanskrit and Marathi), DogonYaro (in some Nigeria languages), Margosa, Neeb (Arabic), Nimtree, Vepu, Vempu, Vepa (Telugu)), Bevu (Kannad), Kohomba (Sihali), Vempu (Tamill), Tamar (Bermese), xoan Ấn Độ (Vietnami), and Indian Lilac (English). Africans call it Muarubaini or Swahili which means the tree having the value of treating 40 types of ailments.

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Key Words Integrated Pest Management Programme, Dr. Ray Smith, Economic Threshold Level, Azadirachta indica, Biological Pest Control

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