Pink bollworm attacks have forced several cotton farmers to shift to other crops, resulting in a drop in acreage this season. Cotton farmers now have some hope. Though formulations are available in the market, farmers do not find these cost-effective. The Central Institute of Cotton Research (CICR) , Nagpur, has developed a low-cost pheromone trap that could help farmers reduce the spread of pink bollworm.
According to KR Kranthi, director, CICR, the Nagpur based-institute has been working on this issue for the last couple of years and has succeeded in commercialising the technology that has been taken by a local player. The pink bollworm has begun developing resistance to the BT cotton seed and become a huge cause of concern for farmers. The institute has developed a pheromone-based trap with a chemical formulation that has a long-term effect. This has been developed under the aegis of the Indian Council for Agricultural Research, with Innovative Biosciences.
The trap and the lure cost R20 plus taxes and a farmer ideally has to deploy about 40 such traps per acre for effective control of the pink bollworm.