Staff Publications

Staff Publications

  • external user (warningwarning)
  • Log in as
  • language uk
  • About

    'Staff publications' is the digital repository of Wageningen University & Research

    'Staff publications' contains references to publications authored by Wageningen University staff from 1976 onward.

    Publications authored by the staff of the Research Institutes are available from 1995 onwards.

    Full text documents are added when available. The database is updated daily and currently holds about 240,000 items, of which 72,000 in open access.

    We have a manual that explains all the features 

Record number 539587
Title Uncovering the economic value of natural enemies and true costs of chemical insecticides to cotton farmers in China
Author(s) Huang, Jikun; Zhou, Ke; Zhang, Wei; Deng, Xiangzheng; Der Werf, Wopke van; Lu, Yanhui; Wu, Kongming; Rosegrant, Mark W.
Source Environmental Research Letters 13 (2018)6. - ISSN 1748-9318
DOI https://doi.org/10.1088/1748-9326/aabfb0
Department(s) Crop and Weed Ecology
PE&RC
Publication type Refereed Article in a scientific journal
Publication year 2018
Keyword(s) biological control - economic value - insecticides - natural enemies - smallholder farming
Abstract

Little empirical evidence on the economic value of biological control of pests at farm level is available to improve economic decision-making by farmers and policy makers. Using insect sampling and household survey in an integrated bio-economic analysis framework, this paper studies farmers' crop management practices in cotton in the North China Plain, and estimates the marginal value of natural enemies and costs of chemical insecticides to farmers. Ladybeetles (mainly Harmonia axyridis, Propylea japonica, and Coccinella septempunctata), the dominant natural enemy group that controls the primary pest (aphid) in cotton in our study area, provide a significant economic benefit that is unknown to the farmers. Even at the current high levels of insecticide use, an additional ladybeetle provides an economic benefit of 0.05 CNY (almost USD 0.01) to farmers. The use of broad-spectrum insecticides by farmers is alarmingly excessive, not only undermining farmers' cotton profitability but also inducing social costs as well as disruption of the natural pest suppression system. Doubling current ladybeetle density in cotton field could gain an estimated USD 300 million for cotton farmers in China, providing a strong economic case for policies to move the pest control system towards a more ecologically-based regime, with positive consequences for farm income and environmental health. With rising use of biological control service provided by natural enemies such as ladybeetles in cotton fields, significant falls in farmers' insecticide use would be expected, which could raise the value of ladybeetles and other natural enemies even further. The results indicate that there is an urgent need to rationalize inputs and move forward to improved agro-ecosystem management in smallholder farming system. Raising knowledge and awareness on the costs and value of biological pest control versus insecticides among farmers and policy makers and having effective extension service, are priorities towards achieving a more ecologically-based approach to crop protection on smallholder farms.

Comments
There are no comments yet. You can post the first one!
Post a comment
 
Please log in to use this service. Login as Wageningen University & Research user or guest user in upper right hand corner of this page.