Government warns farmers over Fall Armyworm outbreak

The Ministry of Agriculture, Irrigation and Water Development has warned farmers against using old pesticides in order to deal with the Fall Armyworm outbreak in some parts of the country.

Spokesperson for the Ministry, Osborn Tsoka cautioned that the continued use of old pesticides by farmers may result in pest resistance.

Tsoka disclosed that government procured new pesticides which farmers can use to battle the Fall Armyworm.

“Besides the training the farmers on how to apply the pesticides, the ministry has allocated pesticides in different affected districts for farmers to buy and use,” he said.

Tsoka said although the pesticides are very expensive for the smallholder farmers, encouraged farmers to use them.

“When we look at the pestcide that we are using, ordinary farmers cannot afford to buy them but the commercial farmers,” he added.

Tsoka however, said that small-holder farmers can be assisted by government using some programs in their districts in order to fight the outbreak.

The Fall Armyworm is an insect that feeds on more than 80 plant species, including maize, rice, sorghum and sugarcane but also vegetable crops.

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