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International IPM program drives sustainable management of Tomato Leafminer

The lepidopteran pest Tuta absoluta is one of the world’s most devastating phytophagous species affecting tomato plants and fresh tomatoes, causing high levels of crop production loss, especially when no control strategies are implemented. Tuta absoluta—sometimes known as the tomato leafminer, tomato pinworm, or tomato moth—continues to cause crop losses in the Americas, where it originates, but more recently, it has invaded production areas in Europe, Asia, and Africa, owing to the globalization of commerce and trade, which, along with other factors, is considered responsible for the increase in invasive species.

Given T. absoluta‘s economic importance, management strategies have mainly focused on pesticides with a wide range of organic micropollutants that negatively impact the environment, mostly due to biomagnification and bioconcentration. Thus, more sustainable strategies need to be used alongside chemical control, including biological control agents such as parasitoids, predators, and entomopathogenic microorganisms; botanical insecticides; and pheromones and plant resistance.

In an article published in May 2022 in the open-access Journal of Integrated Pest Management (JIPM), researchers at the Centre for Agriculture and Bioscience International and several universities in Latin America detail case studies in sustainable management efforts for T. absoluta through CABI’s Plantwise program. (Co-author of this article, Yelitza C. Colmenárez, Ph.D., is the lead author of the report in JIPM.)


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