Andalucia sets up government-funded IPM organisation

The UK could learn from Europe's largest fruit and vegetable growing region, which is set to lead the way in reducing pesticide residues with the launch of Hortyfruta, a not-for-profit organisation dedicated to creating integrated pest management (IPM) systems for growers.

Hortyfruta will represent the interests of all farmers - some 20,000 producers - in the region of Andalucia, Spain, and aims to introduce predatory insects into all protected growing environments to control pests and cut pesticide use so growers can offer many of the benefits of organic farming to the mainstream consumer.

Hortyfruta general manger Maria Jose Pardo hopes the organisation will act as a best-practice model for adoption elsewhere, including the UK. She said: "We hope to highlight biological controls that UK growers will be interested in and inspired by. IPM could be another farming method for UK growers to consider.

"Hortyfruta is an example of best practice in growers working together to make sustainable farming a reality, and in raising awareness to government, consumers and retailers alike of the health and environmental benefits of IPM."

She said it was essential that governments and local authorities get behind any such scheme. The Andalucian regional government is ploughing EUR300m (£229.7m) into the initiative, including financial incentives to encourage the rapid uptake of IPM in the region.

Andalucian regional government minister Juan Deus said: "The Andalucian government has given funding to farmers for the acquisition of predatory insects. It will maintain this level of funding for the next four years ... because finding more sustainable farming methods is of real importance to us."


Have you registered with us yet?

Register now to enjoy more articles and free email bulletins

Sign up now
Already registered?
Sign in

Before commenting please read our rules for commenting on articles.

If you see a comment you find offensive, you can flag it as inappropriate. In the top right-hand corner of an individual comment, you will see 'flag as inappropriate'. Clicking this prompts us to review the comment. For further information see our rules for commenting on articles.

comments powered by Disqus

Read These Next

Buoyant demand for UK apples but frost and labour remain concerns

Buoyant demand for UK apples but frost and labour remain concerns

As the British apple season begins, English Apples & Pears (EAP) is warning that growers will feel the effects of both a late frost in spring and also constrained labour supply.

Tomorrow's tractors

Tomorrow's tractors

These machines have advanced rapidly over recent years but what does the future hold? Sally Drury looks ahead.

Tractors for growers

Tractors for growers

The latest specialist tractors are providing wider choice for growers working in narrow rows, Sally Drury reports.


Follow us on:
  • Facebook
  • LinkedIn
  • Twitter
  • Google +
Horticulture Jobs
More Horticulture Jobs

Pest & Disease Tracker bulletin 

The latest pest and disease alerts, how to treat them, plus EAMU updates, sent direct to your inbox.

Sign up here

Professor Geoffrey Dixon

GreenGene International chair Geoff Dixon on the business of fresh produce production
 

Read Professor Geoffrey Dixon