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Crop Protection: A Consideration of the Effectiveness and Disadvantages of Current Methods and of the Scope for Improvement

I. J. Graham-Bryce
Philosophical Transactions of the Royal Society of London. Series B, Biological Sciences
Vol. 281, No. 980, The Management of Inputs for Yet Greater Agricultural Yield and Efficiency (Nov. 25, 1977), pp. 163-179
Published by: Royal Society
Stable URL: http://www.jstor.org/stable/2417823
Page Count: 17
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Crop Protection: A Consideration of the Effectiveness and Disadvantages of Current Methods and of the Scope for Improvement
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Abstract

Ideally crop protection should prevent damaging effects of pests, diseases and weeds economically, safely and without harming the environment or inducing subsequent control problems. Present methods, based mainly on pesticides and resistant crop varieties, control many damaging organisms effectively but have important limitations. Vulnerability to the emergence of tolerant strains of pest or pathogen is probably the most severe; chemical methods are also often insufficiently selective and very wasteful. Dependence on these methods will continue, however, and it is therefore essential to seek ways of minimizing their deficiencies. The prospects for improvement are discussed in relation to the need for better intelligence about infestations and their consequences, the need to ensure that control measures remain effective and the need to improve the efficiency of utilization of crop protection agents. Implementation of the suggestions for improvement could require fundamental changes in the organization of crop protection practices.

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