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Andy Robinson

Potato Extension Agronomist

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Free Zebra Chip Webinar May 7th

The USDA Office of Pest Management Policy and The American Phytopathological Society are hosting a free webinar on Zebra Chip May 7, 2015 at 10:00 a.m. Central. This one-hour webinar, titled “Overview of Zebra Chip Research in the U.S.” will be presented by Dr. Charlie Rush, a plant pathologist at the Texas A&M AgriLife Research and Extension Center and a leading authority on Zebra Chip. In his presentation, Rush will talk about components of a wide-ranging response and recovery plan that focuses on Zebra Chip’s control. These components include the etiology, epidemiology, detection, economics, and management of Zebra Chip. Rush will also identify and discuss priorities needed in research, extension and education to control zebra chip outbreaks.

This webinar is hosted by USDA Office of Pest Management Policy and APS with support from the National Plant Disease Recovery System (NPDRS).

The U.S. potato industry had farm-level sales of nearly $4 billion in 2013 and constitutes a vital segment of American agriculture. However, the economic sustainability of this industry is threatened by an emerging disease named Zebra Chip (ZC). ZC is putatively caused by a bacterium, Candidatus Liberibacter solanacearum, which is vectored by the potato psyllid (Bactericera cockerelli). The disease was named for the characteristic striping and discoloration in potato chips produced from infected tubers, but it affects all market classes of processing and fresh potatoes, by reducing both yield and quality. ZC was first reported in the US from South Texas in 2000, but now has spread to other major production regions across the western US and is widespread throughout Mexico, Central America and New Zealand. Insecticide-based management programs have been developed but the multiple applications required to ensure adequate vector control are expensive, environmentally undesirable and, for the long term, unsustainable.
In an effort to mitigate the impact of ZC disease outbreak, components of a response and recovery plan that include its etiology, epidemiology, detection, economics, and disease management strategies will be discussed. In addition, priorities needed in research, extension and education to this high consequence plant disease will be identified.

Click here to register and for more more information. 

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