In agriculture, the word "plague" includes all those animals, plants, and microorganisms that substantially damage agricultural production. It is a fairly common problem, since year after year it affects many Spanish growers, causing notable economic losses and considerable emotional damage.

Do you know what a pest control program is? Are you clear about the most efficient pest control methods? Why is it so important to have an optimal pest control system on your farm?

Discover, from the hand of SUEZ professionals, the answer to all these questions. And, in addition, all the information on pest control in organic farming or their biological control, an upward trend in the sector due to its surprising results.

What is a Pest Control Program?

Can you not imagine what factor usually triggers a plague in a crop? You may be surprised by the answer. Usually, the main causes are usually the usual measures that farmers use to increase the yield of the field.

The inappropriate use of fertilizers, multiple cultivations through the reduction or elimination of rested soils, as well as the monoculture of high-production varieties, are some actions that can be prone to generating a favorable ecosystem for pests.

In this context, any effective agrosystem requires a pest control program. For this reason, after a complete audit of the crop, the specialists develop a strategic plan. This includes a series of preventive and control measures or methods that must be used by growers throughout the season, with the aim of avoiding the presence of those agents that could form a pest.

The basic information that a pest control program should contain is the following:
Detail the implicit and explicit characteristics of the farm.
Specify the different types of pests that can occur.
Define the objectives of pest control.
Develop protocols that indicate how pest control operations will be carried out.
Specify the most effective pest and disease control methods.
In the absence of a pest prevention and control technician, specify who will be in charge of carrying out the supervision of said pest and the roles that each member will play.
Establish evaluation guidelines that serve to verify the effectiveness of the actions described throughout the pest control program.
Pest prevention and control methods
In order to prevent plants and crops from being attacked by insects or other pests, prevention is better than cure. Hence the importance of a good pest control program, as we have specified in the previous section.

In the unavoidable case of a plague, it is essential to fully know what it is, its origin and characteristics, the extent of the damage it may cause, as well as the factors that have promoted its appearance and development, with the aim of adopting the necessary measures to eradicate it successfully and guarantee the survival of the sector.

Although plantations are generally fumigated using chemicals to prevent the spread of agricultural pests and diseases, there are other prevention methods and types of pest control.

Among the most common pest control systems, the following stand out:
Chemical control of agricultural pests
This pest control method continues to be the most widespread in terms of use, mainly due to its immediate action. It consists of using harmful substances, pesticides, or other toxic agents to combat pests. The biggest drawback of chemical control of agricultural pests lies in the extreme damage it exerts on the environment, negatively affecting both the land itself and other living beings, regardless of whether they are considered a pest or not.

Biological control of agricultural pests

It is based on the premise of fighting the plague thanks to the use of other living organisms that prey and destroy it. This method, faithful to the life cycle, uses natural agents to eliminate pests, such as microorganisms, substances of natural origin (vitamins, plant hormones, and plants), or other parasites or predators. Due to the fact that it is a natural pest treatment, it is more difficult for them to develop resistance, which could happen with chemical pest control. As the main drawback, it should be noted that the effects of its application are demonstrable in the long term, which is why more aggressive methods are often preferred, such as chemical control, despite the fact that they are more harmful to the entire environment. Further,

Pest control cost

There are several factors that go into defining the pest control fee: the kind of pest, the affected area, the type of method, the duration and the amount of treatment to be applied. Once these variables have been defined to prevent, control or exterminate a pest, a definition of costs can be stipulated that is more in line with the real needs of the farm.

At SUEZ we advise agricultural entrepreneurs to face the challenges of the sector, as well as to optimize the profitability of their farms. Find out about our solutions in advice on cultivation systems and soil, water and cultivation control !!!