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Pink Bollworm Attack On Cotton In Maharashtra

20 Aug 2019 5:04 pm
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MUMBAI(Commoditiescontrol) – The pink bollworm infestation on cotton crops has crossed the 'economic threshold limit' (ETL) in some parts of Maharashtra. The insect has hit the crop mainly in Akola, Parbhani, Nanded, and Yavatmal where many farmers had opted for early sowing during May and June, said VN Waghmare, director, Central Institute of Cotton Research (CICR), Nagpur.

The economic threshold is reached when the value of the damaged crops exceeds the cost of controlling the pest. The crossing of the threshold means that a sizable amount of the crop may be lost, according to the official.

Preliminary surveys had revealed that around 5% of the crop had been affected by PBW. The Kharif pre-monsoon sowing of cotton took place in about 1- 1.5 lakh hectare in the state and those areas have been affected the most. Moreover, the crop is still in the vegetative stage here and therefore has less threat. This season, early sowing also occurred in some parts of the state as part of a protest launched by Shetkari Sanghatana to symbolically sow banned HTBT Cotton. Senior officials in the agriculture department said that 42 lakh hectare has come under cotton this season, almost the equal to the last year.

“In Maharashtra 21 districts are being monitored by officials. At present, because of the rain, farmers are unable to go in their fields to find out the extent of the infestation but once the rain subsides, we shall get a clearer picture,”
Waghmare, director of CICR said.

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