The prohibition of active matter and climate change are increasing the activity of emerging pests and Koppert is offering new solutions
Fruit Today interviewed Juan Miguel Rodríguez, Citrus Manager from Koppert España, to discover the company’s offer in biological control for citrus fruits.
What are Koppert’s most important challenges in the current citrus fruit campaign?
We have to reveal the excellent results obtained in biological pest control for citrus fruits over the last few campaigns. For example, the use of Citripar® to control ‘mealy bug’ and Aphytis®, which is the best biological solution to control California red scale (Aonidiellaaurantii) and lemon tree oleander scale (Aspidiotusnerii).
Can you confirm that biological control is an effective alternative to chemical treatments in citrus fruits?
There is no doubt about it. A good example is that we have prepared an effective protocol for controlling red spider mite using the mite Neoseiuluscalifornicus. The introduction of this predatory mite in the new sachet format SpicalUltimite® has been the key to the success in the control of this important pest, managing to reduce and at times, eliminate the use of chemical treatments.
In which region of Spain is biological control in citrus fruits growing most?
Koppert is growing quickly in all the production areas of Spain, particularly in lemons. Additionally, we have good results for mandarins and clementines as well as grapefruit and oranges. Our protocols adapt to any production model: ecological, conventional, Zero residue and biodynamic.
What new developments will we see in the near future? What are you working on?
Over the next few years, we will have macro and micro biological solutions to control emerging pests, white fly, leafhoppers, aphids, etc., as well as improving the ones already existing.
For us, the training and guidance of the technicians is essential, not only in the handling of the biological control using the introduction of insects, but also in the handling of the biological control for conservation (handling vegetable cover, weed management, installation of hedges, etc.) which is an essential tool for controlling pests such as thrips or aphids.