In recent years, there has been renewed interest in popularizing organic and consumer-safe pest management technologies, to cater to organic and export-focus cultivation of crops in India.

Need for promotion

A national seminar on Biotechnological approaches in organic and eco-friendly crop protection towards promoting knowledge transfer and technology awareness was organised recently by the Sun Agro biotech research centre (SABRC) and the Department of Zoology, University of Madras in Chennai.

The event was inaugurated by Dr. P. Murugesa Boopathy, Vice Chancellor, Tamil Nadu agricultural University.

He exhorted the scientific community to keep constantly reminding themselves of the need to keep evolving strategies and fine-tuning agro-technologies, so as to be able to provide assured and adequate food to the growing population.

Need for support

He also emphasized the need to adequately support the organic farming communities with appropriate technologies, especially eco-friendly pest control options to be available at farm level.

He further pointed out the potential for public-private R&D collaboration as a vital link in catering to consumer-safe produce by promoting organic technology products like biopesticides and pheromone trapping systems.

Dr. J. Kannaiyan, President, Sun Agro Biotech Research Centre (SABRC), in his introductory remarks informed the delegates that SABRC is a technocrats-founded consortium, devoted to supporting R&D in developing eco-friendly agro products, and has been recognized by Govt. of India - Department of Scientific &Industrial Research (DSIR) as an approved centre for scientific and industrial R&D.

Past initiatives

He also recalled the past initiatives of SABRC in convening two such national seminars earlier in the last five years, with focus on organic and eco-friendly pest management technologies .

Dr.E.I. Jonathan, Director, Centre for Plant Protection Studies (CPPS), TNAU in his inaugural lecture spoke on the recent success of biological control of papaya mealy bug in the state.

He explained that this successful campaign for mass production and field release of the imported bioagent was an outstanding success story in biological pest control at national level. About 60 experts from several ICAR institutes and other Universities participated.