Editor: T.V. Price
Papua New Guinea is an important partner country for ACIAR, reflecting the long-term relationship between Australia and PNG.
Village-based agriculture supports between 70 and 80 per cent of the PNG population with domestic trading of fresh produce a very important source of cash incomes. Crop protection is vital to sustain this sector.
The papers in this publication include reports from several projects supported by ACIAR. One project, which is active in PNG, Indonesia and Australia, has mapped sugarcane pests and diseases. Research has now extended to survey key areas to build up a comprehensive picture of pest and disease distribution.
In other projects, pests of horticulture crops, the Oribius weevil and the red-banded mango caterpillar, are being studied. The damage caused by the weevil has been determined, and treatments to exclude adult weevils from some plants have resulted in price premiums of up to 200 per cent.
The use of biocontrol agents against the invasive weed Chromolaena continues to gain momentum in PNG. A new control agent — a stem galling fly — has been widely released and is established at many sites.