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French warning over corn rootworms

French authorities have issued a warning following the discovery of western corn rootworms ( Diabrotica virgifera) in the Lorraine region, reports French newswire Agrisalon.com. Producers located within a radius of 1 km around the discovery of the pest must cease cereal cultivation for three years. The prohibition will last two years for those 1-5 km from the find. The pest, which is native to Central America, was found in France for the first time in 2002 ( Agrow No 408, p 11) and has reportedly spread in recent years, especially in the Alsace region. An official has been quoted as saying that it was a major problem in the US before the country was able to alleviate it through crop rotation and the use of genetically modified insect-resistant crops.

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