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Philippines: Scientific steps to target banana wilt

Department of Science and Technology officials met with representatives of the banana industry this week in Davao City to discuss the next steps to be taken in combating fusarium wilt.

Department Secretary, Mario G. Montejo told growers that the government was doing all it could in relation to providing a scientific, technological method of combating the disease.

Amongst the options currently being tabled is the use of biological controls against the fungus that causes the disease.

Another option is further study into why some soil types seem to be able to resist the disease.

There are also plans to try and introduce new varieties that are disease resistant and favourably disposed towards the local environment. These would need to be able to provide fruit in similar quantity and of the same quality as the traditionally used Cavendish varieties.

There are also plans to step up quarantine measures to more effectively manage the spread of the disease.

Projects will be joint funded by the Department and by the Philippines Council for Agriculture, Aquatics Research and Development.

Source: www.bm.com.ph

Publication date: 2/17/2012


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