IPM Research in Turkish Tomato Fields Shows Importance of Fungicide Sprays

Tomatoes are a major vegetable crop grown in Turkey with an annual production of about 10 million tons. Fresh market tomatoes account for 80% of production while canned, dried and paste products from Turkey’s 55 tomato processing plants account for the remaining 20%. Late blight is a devastating disease of tomatoes for which Turkish farmers typically spray twice a season. However, IPM research has shown that 5 carefully-timed applications are much more productive.

“In 1997, Phytophthora infestans (Late Blight) caused an epidemic and great crop losses, especially in the Marmara and Trakya regions. Turkey, as a tomato paste producer, had to import tomato paste to satisfy the contracted commitments. IPM studies were conducted by Ege University, Faculty of Agriculture and Department of Plant Protection in Marmara Region (Bursa) during the years 2000-2005.”

“In all IPM programs, a total of 5 fungicide applications were made depending on which IPM program was followed. … The grower’s standard had two fungicide applications when first symptoms appeared. All of the IPM weather timed spray programs increased marketable tomato yields resulting in higher net economic returns to the farmer. The growers recognized how poorly their standard spray program yielded, resulting in lost income to their farm operation.”

Authors: H. Saygili, N. Tosun and H. Türküsay.
Affiliation: Ege University, Faculty of Agriculture, Izmir-Bornova, Turkey
Title: Integrated Disease Management in Processing Tomato in Turkey
Publication: Acta Horticulturae. 2007. 758.

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