Exploring integrated pest management strategies in the control of the fall armyworm in smallholder organic agriculture farms in Africa.
The invasion of the fall armyworm was first reported in Africa in the year 2016. It has since then spread to over 40 countries across Africa, Asia and Australia. Being a polyphagous insect, the potential devastation effects of fall armyworm are enormous, especially among smallholder farmers. Currently, most farmers rely on the use of synthetic pesticides for the control of this pest. Organic agriculture however usually has very limited synthetic products approved for the control of pests. Organic production system therefore often depends on ecological processes, biodiversity and cycles adapted to local conditions for the management of pest. This paper reviews the availablemanagement methods applicable to the control of fall armyworm that can be adopted in an organic agriculture setting. Agroecological methods such as the push-pull technology, crop rotation and other methods including the use of resistant varieties, pheromone traps and biocontrol agents form an important control building block. Integrating these methods in a manner that is acceptable for organic certification will need further research, but it is certainly the way to go in combating the menace of the fall armyworm in organic agricultureand were reviewed in this paper.