The IRAC Plant Biotechnology Working Group has completed a short poster brochure discussing the use of Bt corn to manage fall armyworm, Spodoptera frugiperda, in the Asia-Pacific region. The brochure complements IRAC’s poster and brochure developed in 2021 entitled “Manage fall armyworm in 3 steps”. The 3 steps are 1) Incorporate agronomic actions, 2) Identify pest and decide when to treat, and 3) Control FAW using IRM principles. The main IRM principle relayed in this brochure is the rotation in modes of action across sequential pest generations. While this 3 step process is effective for most countries in the Asia-Pacific region where crop protection tools are readily available, Bt corn is an important tool that also may be used by farmers in much of the Americas as well as in an increasing number of countries where fall armyworm has recently invaded like South Africa, Philippines, Pakistan, and Vietnam.
The Bt corn brochure is entitled “Integrating Bt corn for fall armyworm (FAW) management”. Effective Bt hybrids against fall armyworm are available and we want to ensure that farmers follow insect resistance management guidelines to maximize long-term benefits of the technology. This brochure also discusses a simple 3 step process: 1) Plan, 2) Plant refuge & monitor, and 3) Evaluate & Treat. The purpose is to be proactive in building an Integrated Pest Management (IPM) plan to use multiple tools and tactics against FAW founded on the host-plant resistance provided by Bt traits. Our goal is for farmers to be able to understand what a non-Bt refuge is, why it is important, and how to incorporate it when they plant a Bt corn hybrid. We also advise farmers to scout their fields and determine the need to incorporate additional control tools, such as insecticidal sprays, if indeed economic population levels of FAW arise in their Bt and non-Bt corn fields.
The new brochure is posted here and was developed in conjunction with CropLife International and with feedback from many contributors. If you have questions regarding this educational brochure supported by IRAC, please contact Alan Porter at email@example.com.