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Producing an edible lettuce: pesticides or crop genetics?

Lettuce with downy mildewA healthy looking vegetable from the supermarkets, largely free from blemishes and creepy crawlies is very likely to have been treated multiple times with different pesticides. Pesticides in crop production however usually affect a wider range of species than those we want to control, they are an extra cost to farmers, and they confer a high selection pressure on the pests which in time inevitably evolve resistance to the chemical and thus diminish its efficacy. One way to reduce the environmental impact of pest control is to breed plants that are innately resistant to the pests. More information

Picture: lettuce infected by the fungus-like oomycete pathogen downy mildew (Bremia lactucae)

All Crop Centre articles as part of International Year of Plant Health 2020

Wed 04 Nov 2020, 10:36