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Completed project

Field-based testing for fall armyworm (MT19014)

Key research provider: Victorian Department of Jobs, Precincts and Regions
Publication date: Wednesday, June 1, 2022

What was it all about?

Running from 2021 to 2022, this project, funded by the Department of Agriculture, Water and Environment (DAWE), developed a rapid molecular test for use in the field for early detection and identification of fall armyworm (FAW).

The DNA-based tests developed use Loop-Mediated Amplification (LAMP) technology to provide rapid and highly accurate tests suitable for use in the field. The project assessed the performance of these LAMP tests in-field against a broad panel of moth species, to determine how effectively each can detect FAW. Workshops were also run to demonstrate to growers and agronomists the LAMP identification process.

This short investment conducted the second phase of this research to foster national collaboration in monitoring the movement of fall armyworm through the provision of a quick and accurate test with standardised protocols for use.

The project:

  • Facilitated the rapid identification of fall armyworm in regional Australia through in-field testing across multiple horticultural areas.
  • Increased awareness of in-field testing in regional Australia, especially northern Australia. This included engaging with biosecurity and growers to demonstrate the testing.
  • Improved knowledge of technological requirements in regional Australia to allow the rollout of this technology for fall armyworm detection and surveillance.


Funding statement:
This project is a multi-industry strategic levy investment in the Hort Innovation Melon, Nursery, Sweetpotato, Turf and Vegatable Funds.

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