Submitted to: Journal of Economic Entomology
Publication Type: Peer Reviewed Journal
Publication Acceptance Date: May 3, 2000
Publication Date: August 20, 2000
Citation: JOHNSON, J.A., VALERO, K.A., HANNEL, M.M., GILL, R.F. SEASONAL OCCURRANCE OF POSTHARVEST DRIED FRUIT INSECTS AND THEIR PARASITOIDS IN A CULLED FIG WAREHOUSE. JOURNAL OF ECONOMIC ENTOMOLOGY. 2000. 93 (4) 1380-1390. Interpretive Summary: Insects, mites, vertebrates, and microorganisms destroy 9 to 20% of the world's stored foods each year, and the food supplies of developing countries are the most severely effected. The economic costs due to pest infestation include product loss through feeding by the pests, decrease in product quality, contamination of the product with toxins, webbing, cast skins, hairs or feces, and the cost of control. For any stored food facility, a thorough pest management program can be developed to avoid these losses. Such a program should include proper design of facilities, equipment and packaging, rigorous attention to sanitation, maintenance of suitable temperature, humidity, and other components of the storage environment, and judicious use of pesticides.
Technical Abstract: World-wide losses of stored foods caused by insects, mites, vertebrates, and microorganisms are estimated at 9 to 20%, with developing countries most severely effected. Economic losses include actual consumption of product by pests, product quality degradation through biochemical changes, product contamination with toxins, webbing, cast skins, hairs or feces, and the cost of control. Minimizing these losses requires implementation of a thorough pest management program which should include proper facility design, careful sanitation, maintenance of suitable storage environments, and judicious use of pesticides.