This project was initiated in 2016 with a USDA/NIFA grant award under the Applied Research and Development Program (ARDP, Project Number 2016-07652), to create an IPM Strategic Planning process and develop it into a model for stakeholder assessment and priority setting. This has become an important part of Oregon’s statewide IPM program, and capacity for expansion to other regional and national IPM programs.
The project connects US Regional IPM Center-developed consultative processes with local IPM extension programming to achieve a more integrated research and extension system. We are developing a model for agricultural stakeholder engagement and follow-up on critical IPM challenges that combines Pest Management Strategic Planning (PMSP), Pest-Losses Impact Assessments, and participatory extension education.
The Pest Losses Impact Assessment is an economic assessment of pest impacts developed by our colleagues at the Arizona Pest Management Center (AMPC). In collaboration with AMPC, we are refining this assessment process for use in Pacific Northwest commodities. Visit the project page for more information.
The IPM Strategic Planning project builds on our former PMSP project to create more IPM-focused PMSPs, to better understand IPM critical needs, and to develop stronger feedback pathways and greater agricultural network connectivity within Oregon and the Pacific Northwest in order to meet IPM needs and increase adoption.
The project seeks to understand the current practices and critical pest management needs of Pacific Northwest farmers, and build strong communication pathways for sharing and meeting these critical needs with innovative, collaborative solutions. IPM Strategic Planning fosters collaboration and consensus among industry stakeholders, including farmers, researchers, and regulators.
Currently, eight Pacific Northwest industries are engaged in our project: onion, cranberry, sweet cherry, hazelnut, potato, grass seed, mint, and pear.
For each industry, an IPM Strategic Plan document is created in collaboration with a representative group of farmers, researchers, extension agents, crop consultants, regulators, and other relevant stakeholders. Detailed information is obtained from this group regarding the pest management activities and strategies conducted during each of the crop stages. Stakeholders are consulted on critical pest management needs in research, regulation, and education, as well as broad needs related to IPM. The resulting document describes the pests, challenges, and critical needs in detail.
A key feature of the process is a 2-3 year cycle of regular revision, with more explicit assessments of impacts over time, and changes in IPM adoption and practices that occur between consultations. The working group effectively forms an advisory group that partners with extension to provide capacity for industry-wide, adaptive improvements in IPM. The regular revision process will to provide a mechanism for monitoring status and trends, and to maintain engagement with the commodity advisory group.
In collaboration with local and regional Extension, building on our expertise in IPM program design and pesticide risk management, extension education events are developed that act upon the critical IPM needs identified from stakeholders through the IPM Strategic Planning process. We will also conduct pesticide risk assessments and provide information about application management, pollinator and natural enemy protection and agro-ecology to support local extension IPM programing.
IPM Strategic Planning-style methods of assessment are also applicable to areas that lie beyond food and farming, including statewide agencies engaged with pest management associated with wild and protected areas, rights-of-way, parks and the corrections service, to expand the adoption of IPM across the state and the region.
The IPM Strategic Plan serves as an effective conduit for communication between farmers and other pest managers to regulators, policymakers, researchers, and other interested constituencies. The process and resulting document offers a strategic plan for the industry as a whole, to help focus where time, money, and energy should be spent on pest management issues. The plan also provides granting organizations with evidence of stakeholder input on pest management priorities, and may enable researchers to be more successful in obtaining federal grant funds to work pest management priorities for the industry.
The EPA and other regulatory agencies look to these documents to better understand current production and pest management practices within an industry when they review and evaluate the merits and needs for a new pesticide registration or re-registration.
IPM Strategic Plans help industries, especially minor crops, in obtaining or retaining conventional, biological, and organic pesticide registrations, all of which are needed to manage pests and produce high quality crops that enter the food chain, and help growers to remain economically viable.
Data gathered from the process is used to create more targeted extension education programs in collaboration with extension agents. This program builds resiliency and improves IPM adoption with a refined focus on decision-support and risk-management.
Malheur County Onion Growers Association
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