IWGO Subgroup launched for fall armyworm in Africa

The 26th IWGO conference successfully took place in the National Agricultural Library of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) in Beijing from 10-12 April 2017. It was organized by the IWGO Co-Convenor Dr Wang Zhenying from the Institute of Plant Protection (IPP) of CAAS. Overall, 98 experts from 11 countries participated and the programme featured 11 scientific sessions with 52 oral presentations and 9 poster presentations covering a range of interrelated topics. Victor Clottey from CABI in Ghana, was invited by the IWGO conference organizers to deliver a keynote presentation about the current spread and limited number of management options for the fall armyworm in Africa. In response, the IOBC global working group launched a subgroup under IWGO focussing on the fall armyworm, the new invader in Africa – similar to the response to the western corn rootworm invasion in Europe in the 1990s. The overall objective of this new subgroup is to establish an independent, internationally recognized platform for the exchange of research results, experiences and ideas on the integrated pest management of fall armyworm. As a first action, the first subgroup meeting will be organized in Ghana or Kenya in early spring 2018 with strong regional participation. IWGO will recruit fall armyworm experts who have been dealing with this pest for many years in other parts of the world to attend and share existing pest management knowledge.

Ulli Kuhlmann, Victor Clottey, Tom Sappington and Wang Zhenyeng (from left to right). Victor Clottey has agreed to help facilitate the new IWGO subgroup on the fall armyworm until the first meeting takes place in Africa early spring 2018 (photo: KCS, Delémont)