Earworms raise agchem control costs by 30% in Brazil
The infestation of earworms (Helicoverpa armigera) on arable crops in Brazil has resulted in a 30% rise in pesticide costs for growers, newswire Agrolink reports. It cites Ministry of Agriculture data showing costs reaching R$374 (US$139 at the current rate)/ha. Plant health director at the Ministry Luis Rangel reportedly says that estimates of losses from agricultural pests on crops “are difficult to gauge, especially those that enter under quarantine”. Grower associations have claimed that losses have amounted to R$10,000 million (US$3,700 million) in the past two years. The country introduced emergency measures against the pest in late 2013, including approving the use of imported emamectin benzoate insecticide.