W1008: Biology and Management of Iris yellow spot virus (IYSV) and Thrips in Onions
Statement of Issues and JustificationOnion (Allium cepa) is an economically important crop in the U.S., generating over 900 million dollars annually in farm receipts from 2000 to 2004. U.S. onion production area ranges from 65,000 to 70,000 hectares annually, with over 80 percent of the summer production (54,000 hectares) in the western states. On average, 53 million metric tons of onion bulbs are harvested annually from nearly 3 million hectares worldwide. A significant portion of the U.S. and world supply of onion seed is produced in the western U.S., primarily in the Pacific Northwest.
Projected economic impacts of Iris yellow spot virus and thrips in the U.S. could reach 60 million dollars (10 percent loss) to 90 million dollars (15 percent loss), in addition to environmental and economic costs due to additional pesticide sprays for thrips control (7.5 to 12.5 million dollars for 3 to 5 additional sprays on 48,500 hectares per year) on onion, and potentially on other allium crops. JUSTIFICATION: Iris yellow spot virus and its Thrips tabaci vector represent an immediate and serious threat to sustainable and productive onion production in the U.S., and the recent detection of this disease in numerous onion producing countries worldwide emphasizes the need to develop economically sound and effective IPM strategies.
The overall objectives of this project have been discussed in previous allium meetings by the 20 or more participants on this regional project, and are designed to promote the national network of onion and other allium researchers, extension personnel and industry reps.
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