The Fall Armyworm outbreak might affect crop production in this year’s growing season in Zomba district, an agricultural official has said.
Zomba District Crop Protection Officer, Josiah Ngochera, was however quick to assure farmers that measures are in place to contain the crop-eating pest.
Zomba was among the districts in the country which was greatly affected by the outbreak that destroyed about 2000 hectares during the previous farming season.
Ngochera said: “The country is still experiencing the influx of fall armyworms and the battle to eliminate these worms cannot be won overnight,” he told YFM online.
He added that his office has intensified activities aimed at training farmers through the lead-farmers so that they are aware and able to identify the pest and how best they can minimize its damage.
Ngochera said apart from training farmers the office has also imparted skills to their front-line officers.
He disclosed that his office has in stock pesticides such us Steward 150, Proclaim fit, Chlorpyrifos 480 EC, Decis forte and Deltanex 25 EC to be applied by farmers.
On 16 January, 2018, Zomba District Agriculture Office released a report which revealed that the district was hit by the fall armyworms and dry spells that affected 76,525 farm households and 24302 hectors of maize.