Fall Armyworm: A Threat to Food Security 

The Department of Agriculture Regional Field Office 3 (DA RFO-3) is yielding to a ‘PRO-ACTIVE’ approach in dealing with the threat of Fall Armyworm (FAW) in a consultative meeting last February 23, 2021 in Lubao, Pampanga. 

FAW, a highly invasive worm, can host more than 300 species of crops, mostly corn. It has been alarming several regions, including Central Luzon, due to infestation damages. DA reported 146 hectares of FAW infestations in the region, in which, six percent (6%) of the local corn industry is affected.  

“Prevention is better than cure,” said Officer-in-Charge – Regional Technical Director (OIC-RTD) Arthur Dayrit, as he emphasized intensifying the surveillance activity of FAW before its status gets critical. He added the importance of information dissemination in raising awareness of FAW among farmers, in which, ground-level management should be strengthened to effectively manage, control, and contain the threat. 

As discussed in the meeting, the use of 1) Sex Pheromone Traps, 2) Biological Control Agents, 3) Physical Methods, and 4) Chemical insecticides are being used as strategies in managing FAW-threatened farms. Setting up pheromone lures are being taught in certain provinces which are being monitored daily. Deployment of crop experts for ocular assessment and distribution of insecticides is being conducted. 

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