Impact of Tuta absoluta (Meyrick) on tomato production in Burkina Faso.
Tuta absoluta is a leafminer native to South America and listed in Burkina Faso since 2016. Its larvae dig galleries in the leaves and fruits of the tomato. Through detailed surveys of 180 growers, we have assessed the impact of this pest on tomato production. The growers produce tomatoes on areas of less than 1/2 hectare. All of them have demonstrated their knowledge of T. absoluta and can describe its symptoms. On average, producers estimate that this leafminer causes yield losses of between 45 and 70%, resulting in financial losses of 1 to 2 million CFA francs per hectare. Almost 80% of producers use only plant protection products, of which only 42% are approved for tomatoes. Fifteen active substances are used, including emamectin benzoate, acetamiprid and cypermethrin. The resistance of the populations is such that many producers abandon plots because of uncontrollable infestation. Alternative methods are sometimes used: destruction of infested plants, crop rotation, weeding and biopesticides. This work is necessary to develop effective, accessible control methods that respect the environment and the health of producers.