Risk Mitigation and Management
Risk mitigation instruments: A number of reports, instruments and initiatives were developed to address pest and diseases, climate and market risks. The reports developed include:
- Report #1: Protocols for Surveillance and Emergency Response Plans for Coconut Pests and Diseases of Economic Importance.
- Report #2: Effective entomological risk mitigation measures for use in the Caribbean.
- Report #3: A Review and Assessment of Legislation for Cross Border Movement of Germplasm Across Countries. The comprised an assessment and review of legislation for cross border movement of germplasm across countries. This was done in direct relation to the importation of coconut germplasm into the CARIFORUM Region IPM plots were developed in DR, Jamaica, Trinidad, Suriname and St Lucia.
Alongside with the development of risk mitigation instruments, disease resistant germplasm and planting plans were approved. The following activities are highlighted:
- Germplasm were successfully imported in Jamaica, Belize, St Lucia, Guyana, DR, and Barbados.
- Risk Mitigation workshops were conducted in 11 countries. Farmers and technical personnel of the Ministry of Agriculture and other Ministries were trained. Attendance was reported at 346 persons.
- Most respondents found the workshop to be relevant to their coconut farm operations (72%) and the workshop provided good solutions to the risks posed by pests and diseases (81%). When asked if they can now work with Government to develop a risk mitigation plan for the coconut industry (50% said yes, and 24% said somewhat). This highlight the need for training in governance and strengthening of personnel who are part of the Lead Farmer grouping.
- A total of 78% said attending the workshop was worth the effort however, just about 48% said they were in a better position to develop a risk mitigation plan and 17% said they were in a somewhat better position. In terms of awareness, 84% of all respondents were more aware of coconut pests and diseases that affect their farm operations and 83% were also aware of what pests and diseases were present in the country, and 81% were now aware of pests and diseases present in other parts of the world.
Highlights and Relevant Risk Mitigation Case Studies:
- Transboundary movement of coconut germplasm. Importation of germplasm from Costa Rica was not successful as the Costa Rican sampling methods failed to detect the red ring nematode in the seednuts. The shipments had to be rejected. It also provides the project with new information that the nematode can effectively be transmitted through seednuts. This is not currently available in the literature.
- Importance of understanding the pest life cycle: In Dominican Republic one farmer used coconut trunks as support for passionfruit intercropped with young coconut seedlings. The rhinoceros beetle multiplied in the trunk and devasted most of the coconut seedlings.
- Emergence of Castnia Daedalus coconut moth borer in Suriname
- Emergence of Cockle in Guyana; “El Cataron” in DR.
- IPM being tried for Red Ring control in Piparo, Trinidad.