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Sustainable Pest Management in Smallholder Tree Crops: Farmers as IPM Experts

Published by:
Online Location
Publication date
Number of Pages
Type of Publication:
Online platforms & databases
Focus Region:
Sub-Saharan Africa
Asia and the Pacific
Focus Topic:
Agricultural Value Chains / Agri-Businesses
Type of Risk:
Biological & environmental
Type of Risk Managment Option:
Risk reduction/mitigation
Jeff Waage
Migratory Birds Center

IPM has been an underlying principle of cocoa pest and disease management for some time, and has been effectively implemented in plantation systems where company technical specialists make crop protection decisions for large areas of planting. But over the past 30 years, cocoa like many tropical plantation crops has become increasingly a crop of the small-scale farmer, as a result of changes in demography and national policy in many countries. And as a cash crop of smallholders, cocoa has become something of an “orphan commodity”. Well-organised plantation extension systems are not available to smallholders. In any case the problems and options faced by smallholders may be very different than for large plantations. Many national agricultural research and extension programmes are oriented towards food crop production and do not have expertise or experience with cocoa. Finally, its private sector association has left cocoa and other smallholder plantation crops like cotton, coconuts and coffee without the kind of international research programme or support institution as exists for subsistence food crops in the CGIAR.