"Knowing when to attack the insect pushes us to act"

Costa Rica: GAP project for the cultivation of pineapples

Dagoberto Gonzalez, a producer from the Huetar North Zone who has been in the pineapple sector for 16 years, said that he had learned a lot and increased his knowledge about pest management, the use of protective equipment, reading labels, and calibrating equipment, thanks to the training sessions conducted within the framework of the Characterization of agricultural practices and the use and management of agrochemicals in pineapple crops to implement good agricultural practices (GAP) project.

"Samplings are important to know when one should attack insects, it pushes us to act. We also learned how to manage product applications. Producers must know what products to use and in what quantity so that they don't waste it and can take care of the environment," he said.

"It comprises everything, the activity starts from the seeds used, planting, and sampling, among many other things," Gonzalez added.

The project, which is being carried out by the Center for Research in Environmental Pollution (CICA) of the University of Costa Rica and the State Phytosanitary Service (SFE) of the Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock (MAG), seeks to promote good agricultural practices and to promote sustainable and responsible pineapple production in the North Zone. According to the 2017 State of the Nation Report on Sustainable Human Development, in 2015 there were some 37,800 hectares of pineapple cultivated In the region.

The project has been ongoing for more than 3 years and there have been 23 trainings provided to small, medium, and large producers from Pital, Aguas Zarcas, Venecia, and Rio Cuarto. The topics of the training have included: weed management, agrochemicals, cost structures, precision agriculture, and stubble management, among other issues.

In turn, Alonso Chacon, a producer from Puerto Escondido who has been working with pineapples for 20 years, said he had learned to take care of the soil, know more about production costs, and about pest management. Now, he said, he was more aware of the benefits of GAP.

The project invites producers to join this effort in pro of GAP and to participate in the training provided. For more information please
contact isa.cica@ucr.ac.cr or call 2511-8209.

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