Potato (Solanum tuberosum L.) is critical to global food security. Late blight (LB) caused by the oomycete pathogen Phytophthora infestans and early blight (EB) caused by the fungal pathogen Alternaria solani are the main diseases affecting potato production. Both diseases are currently managed through multiple applications of fungicides. Given the potentially negative impact of pesticides on the environment, problems of reduced efficacy due to increased pathogen resistance and the de-listing of many fungicides under the EU Pesticide Directive (2009/128/EC), there is an urgent need for a more sustainable long-term integrated pest management strategy.
ECOSOL will integrate biological control into integrated pest management programs to manage late and early blight. To reach this goal, the efficacy of various biocontrol agents and plant resistance inducers to control disease development will be tested in planta and work will be carried out to understand their mode of activity in order to secure stewardship into the future. The importance of factors including timing of application and level of host resistance on their efficacy will be investigated. The most promising pesticide alternatives will be tested under field conditions in a range of participating countries to ensure transferability.
*At the time of the proposal. Please consider this data as an accurate estimate; it may vary during the project’s lifespan.
Total costs include in kind contribution by grant holders and can therefore be higher than the total requested funding.