CABI’s ground-breaking online bioprotection resource, aimed at promoting the use of non-chemical pest control products, has now been made available in the second East African Country. The CABI BioProtection Portal, which helps growers and pest management advisors identify, source, and correctly apply biocontrol and biopesticides in agriculture to effectively manage their specific crop-pest problems, is now available in Uganda.
It is increasingly clear that certain kinds of chemical pesticides in agriculture are creating serious human health and environmental effects. The portal, which is predicted to become the go-to resource for identifying and sourcing biocontrol and biopesticide products, will be particularly beneficial for growers looking to introduce or enhance biological control of pests in favour of chemical pesticides in order to meet market or export standards, satisfy consumer demands for healthier and safer food and reduce pressures on the environment.
Dr Morris Akiri, Regional Director at CABI Africa, said, “Globally, an estimated 40 percent of crops are lost to pests and diseases. The widespread use of chemical pesticides to fight crop pests alone is not sustainable either economically or environmentally in the long run especially when you factor impacts exacerbated by climate change.”
“CABI is helping growers to adapt to this major challenge through projects that apply, among other things, our expertize in digital development and crop health as well as products like the CABI BioProtection Portal which promote sustainable approaches to pest management.”
“The CABI BioProtection Portal brings together in one place the various safer and more environmentally friendly biocontrol and biopesticide products that growers can add to their ‘arsenal’ against crop pests as part of an integrated pest management plan.”
Users of the CABI BioProtection Portal enter their country and crop-pest problem query in the system to find key information on biocontrol and biopesticide products that are authorized by national regulators for that specific search. Insights will be sourced directly from national governments’ list of registered pesticides and from partner biocontrol manufacturers.
“The government of Uganda has championed several reforms to provide a suitable foundation for the desired transformation in the Agricultural sector. Despite the gains so far attained, a few challenges are imminent. The proliferation of substandard inputs such as pest control products and fertilizers continue to deter our farmers from moving from subsistence to commercial agriculture.”
“There have been occasions in the past where the use of sub-standard products has resulted in the interception of our fresh produce exports hence rendering them less competitive in the global market.”
“It is in the backdrop of these challenges that innovations like the CABI BioProtection Portal can play a role in sensitizing farmers and all other key players in the sector with the right information on where to source high quality, effective yet less hazardous crop protection products,” said Mr. Pius Wakabi Kasaijja, The Permanent Secretary, Ministry of Agriculture, Animal Industry and Fisheries (MAAIF).
The CABI BioProtection Portal has now been launched in Uganda, in addition to already helping farmers reduce reliance on chemical pesticides and increase the use of biopesticides in agriculture in Kenya, Ghana, Morocco, Bangladesh, Brazil, Canada, Chile, Colombia, France, Jordan, Spain and Peru.
This innovative tool has been made available by CABI in collaboration with its network of partner biocontrol manufacturers (Biobest, e-nema, Idai Nature, Koppert Biological Systems, Oro Agri, Syngenta and Applied Bio-nomics) and donors (the Ministry of Foreign Affairs of the Netherlands, the Swiss Agency for Development and Cooperation, African Development Bank, the UK Foreign, Commonwealth and Development Office and the European Commission’s Directorate-General for International Cooperation and Development) who provide invaluable support in the form of technical inputs, strategic guidance and funding.