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Juan Ferré, professor of genetics at the University of Valencia

"Organic production cannot feed the whole world"

During an international congress in Valencia, which hosted the 52nd Annual Meeting of the Society for Invertebrate Pathology and the 17th Meeting of the IOBC-WPRS, Juan Ferré, professor of genetics at the University of Valencia (UV), analyzed the role of bio-insecticides in the cultivation of foods. He stated that organic farming would be unable to feed the entire world population. "It is not possible to feed the entire world just with organic farming; in fact, that is just what happened in the past when there was a smaller world population and there were famines," he said.

Ferré, who was also one of the organizers of this scientific event, explained that biological insecticides currently account for only 2% of the economic value of all global insecticides. He also said that these plant protection products have limitations, because they are "more specific and kill a certain pest, but not other pests," although they are fortunately more beneficial to the environment.

According to Ferré, pests will never be completely eliminated, because "there will always be a population of one that becomes resistant to the pesticide, regardless of the type."

He also said that the problem in Spain is "the lack of biotechnology industries able to apply all the progress made in laboratories." He added that more should be invested in research in the country.

Some of the biggest pests mentioned by the professor were the fruit fly in the case of citrus and the 'Tuta absoluta', which affects tomatoes.

 

Source: Efe / lavanguardia.com


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