China-Pak crop pest management seminar held in Chengdu

In order to strengthen the mutual learning and cooperation between China and Pakistan in the fields of crop pest management technology, prevention and control measures and management standards, the Seminar on Methods and Standards of Crop Pest Management in China and Pakistan was held by International Standardization Talent Training Base (Chengdu), and co-hosted by University of Agriculture Faisalabad (UAF) and University of the Punjab, on September 25 online, attended by technicians of agricultural enterprises engaged in crop pest control and experts of related scientific research institutes from both countries.

Honored guest Dr. Abid Ali, Associate Professor, Department of Entomology at University of Agriculture Faisalabad, gave a keynote speech titled Standard System and Current Situation of Pest Control of Major Crops in Pakistan.

“We are facing growing severe pressure from pests, which is a serious threat to survival and security for Pakistan, an agricultural country. Climate change and high temperatures have intensified pests, in the meantime, extensive cropping signifies a lack of systematic and scientific control. Moreover, blind abuse of pesticides has led to more and more pests becoming resistant further. Such a vicious cycle keeps the cost of plant protection high.”

After analyzing the complex situation of crop pest management in Pakistan, Dr. Ali took several major pests such as Fall Armyworm (FAW) as examples to introduce Pakistan’s current management system (chemical control), and pointed out that Pakistan lacks adequate pest monitoring and forecasting systems, which means that pesticides still dominate prevention and control measures. Statistics shows that Pakistan’s annual pesticide use has soared from 50,000 tons/year in 2001 to 200,000 tons/year in 2020 in the past 20 years.

Therefore, studying the population distribution of natural enemies of pests in different phenological stages and crops will help Pakistan establish a biological management system, by which reduce the use of pesticides. “China has leading technology in the field of biological control. Through learning related experience, it will be of great benefit to the promotion of biological control in Pakistan.”