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Ongoing project

Alternative disinfestation for market access for crops affected by tomato potato psyllid (VG17015)

Key research provider: The Department of Primary Industries and Regional Development, Western Australia

What’s it all about?

Tomato potato psyllid (TPP) was detected in Western Australia in early 2017, and has since had an impact on market access for crops that can act as hosts for the pest including capsicums, chillies and eggplants, as well as tomatoes.

This investment is exploring TPP disinfestation treatments that will help support the trade of fresh produce from Western Australia. Avenues of research include ethyl formate fumigation, low-dose methyl bromide treatment, and the use of irradiation.

Since the last update, the team report the following progress:

  • Large-scale semi-commercial ethyl formate (EF) trials on capsicum and tomato were initiated and completed. Research indicated that fumigation using EF in combination with carbon dioxide is effective against all stage of TPP, including the most tolerant egg stage.

Irradiation dose tests were started, to test sessile life-stages, eggs and nymphs of TPP (with the possibility of testing adults at a later stage) as well as any impact on fruit quality.

ACT NOW

Read this article Western Australian research on TPP develops treatments for market access of affected crops, published in WA Grower magazine, Spring 2020, pp20-21

Since commencing this project, the research team have investigated ethyl formate as a potential treatment solution, building on previous research. So far, the results have indicated that an alternative fumigation method using ethyl formate in combination with carbon dioxide to be effective against all stages of TPP, including the most tolerant egg stage.

The team also assessed for any fruit injury on tomato, capsicum, eggplant and chilli when using the successful treatment. Ethyl formate dose and exposure times were assessed, finding that an effective treatment can be applied without compromising fruit quality.

Results will continue to be shared as they become available.

ACT NOW

Read more about how Western Australian research on TPP develops treatments for market access of affected crops on p20-21 of the WA Grower Magazine, Spring 2020 edition.

Related levy funds
Details

This project is a strategic levy investment in the Hort Innovation Vegetable Fund