Managing invasive potato pests in Eastern and Southern Africa
This project aims to improve food security and livelihoods in Eastern and Southern Africa by enhancing the productivity and safe trade of potatoes.
Potato (Solanum tuberosum) is one of the most consumed and essential staple food crops globally, including in Eastern and Southern Africa (ESA). However, sanitary and phytosanitary (SPS) risks, including invasive pests, threaten the production and trade of potatoes. Potato Cyst Nematodes (PCN; Globodera rostochiensis and G. pallida) are invasive quarantine pests affecting potato production in over 100 countries, including several in the ESA. PCNs are contributing to low yields that directly impact food security. The pests are also affecting the acceptability of potatoes in local markets and competitiveness in regional and international markets.
To enhance the safe trade of potatoes, this project seeks to strengthen the regional SPS capacity to detect, diagnose and manage PCNs by improving understanding among farmers and farmer organizations, NPPOs, and National Research Institutes (NARIs). This will include conducting risk assessments of the PCN and emerging pests affecting the potato value chain and training stakeholders to use modern diagnostic technologies to identify pests.
Results from the assessments will be used to develop Good Practice Guidelines.
The overall outcomes from the project can used as a case study and replicated in other ESA countries with potato pests.