China aims for non-toxic corn borer prevention
Within three years, “green” technologies for the control and prevention of corn borers ( Ostrinia furnacalis) in maize will be applied to some 6.7 million ha across China, reports the Chinese government's service centre for the promulgation of agricultural technology. Green technologies are defined as non-toxic, low residue crop protection methods, including the use of beneficial insects, such as Trichogramma spp, and Bacillus thuringiensis sprays. The centre estimates that crop damage and losses caused by corn borers will be cut to around 5% if such technologies are employed. Corn borers currently cause yield losses of 10-30%. Maize has the largest planted area and yield of all autumn grain crops in China. The corn borer accounts for over a third of all plant diseases and insect pests on maize, and accounts for a crop loss ratio of between 10% and 30%.