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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


Location: Crops Pathology and Genetics Research

2011 Annual Report

1a. Objectives (from AD-416)
1. Conduct comprehensive, comparative cost-benefit analyses for pre-plant soil fumigation with methyl bromide (MB) and fumigant and non-fumigant alternatives to MB being tested in the Pacific Area-Wide Pest Management Program for Integrated Methyl Bromide Alternatives (PAW-MBA) for almonds and stone fruits, walnuts, grapes, sweetpotato, and cut flowers. 2. Predict the economic impact of adoption of alternatives to methyl bromide on California growers of each commodity taking into account the pest management costs and any changes in efficacy. 3. Extend the results of Objectives 1 and 2 to stakeholders.

1b. Approach (from AD-416)
Objective 1-An economic component will be expanded for the Pacific Area-Wide Pest Management Program for Integrated Methyl Bromide Alternatives (PAW-MBA) for almonds and stone fruits, walnuts, grapes, sweetpotato, and cut flowers. For each of these projects the Principal Investigator will tabulate/calculate the costs of pre-plant treatments with methyl bromide and all fumigant and non-fumigant alternatives to methyl bromide being tested in the projects. In addition, the yield data or estimated yield data from the projects will be used to calculate the expected gross income for each of the treatments under consideration. The costs and income will be compared to examine the economics of the alternatives. In order to complete comprehensive and up-to-date economic analyses of the fumigant and non-fumigant alternatives to methyl bromide, PI Klonsky will convene and communicate with the PAW-MBA project leaders for almonds and stone fruits, walnuts, grapes, sweetpotato, and cut flowers; commercial fumigant suppliers and applicators; additional specialists for the crops covered; and regulatory personnel. Economic analysis of the alternative treatments will include average market prices for each commodity and location. The analysis will take any differences in efficacy into account and estimate the impact on gross income from changes in yields and quality over time. “Breakeven” yields and prices will be calculated for cases where there is a significant yield reduction from switching to an alternative to methyl bromide. Objective 2-Results of the analyses conducted under objective 1 will be used to predict the economic impact of adoption of the fumigant and non-fumigant alternatives to MB on California growers of the commodities covered by this project. Objective 3-Results from objectives 1 and 2 will be extended to stakeholders by oral and written presentations at the Annual International Research Conference for Methyl Bromide Alternatives and Emissions Reductions, indoor and field meetings for growers and other stakeholders sponsored UC Cooperative Extension, popular and peer-reviewed publications, and preparation of graphical and written summaries appropriate for PAW-MBA website outreach.

3. Progress Report
Established in support of Obj#2 of the in-house project-the goal being to conduct comprehensive assessments of alternatives to MB in key crop systems & regions dependent upon MB. The goal of this project is to determine the economic impact of adoption of alternatives to MB on CA growers taking into account the pest management costs & any changes in efficacy. The cost & cumulative yield impact of 12 alternative fumigant & tarp combination treatments were compared for almonds. The fumigants considered were Chloropicrin(CP), TeloneC35, TeloneII, & MB w/CP. Each material was applied in 3 ways; full floor, strip along the tree row, and strip with tarp. The TeloneC35 did not have a tarp treatment. For the full floor treatments, TeloneII was the lowest cost material($684 p/acre)followed by TeloneC35($1,800 p/acre), CP($2,000 p/acre), & MB($2,200 p/acre). The strip treatments greatly reduced the costs to 37% of the full floor costs. The tarp added $360 to the costs. For all of the fumigants except CP the full floor treatment had the highest cumulative yield increase followed by the strip with tarp. The lowest yield increase was for the strip treatments in all cases except CP where the strip treatment w/out the tarp was the highest yield increase. Comparing the fumigants, the cumulative almond yield response was highest for the TeloneII full floor treatment(2,909 kernal lbs. p/acre)followed by the TeloneII strip, tarp treatment(2,487lbs). For all of the fumigants the strip treatment had the lowest cost p/lb of yield increase. The lowest cost p/lb of increased yield for each of the fumigants was MB strip($1.00 p/lb.), TeloneC35 strip($.54 p/lb.), CP strip($.32 p/lb.),& TeloneII strip($.11 p/lb.). An economic analysis was also conducted for a peach trial. The fumigants compared were CP, Inline, TeloneC35, & MB. Treatments included spot treatments at the tree site(TeloneC35, Inline, & CP)or strip treatments(TeloneC35 & MB), and treatment w/Sudan grass planted before the fumigation(MB strip, TeloneC35 strip & spot, Inline spot, & CP spot). The Sudan added $214 p/acre in cost. The most expensive treatment was the MB strip w/Sudan($1,101 p/acre). TeloneC35 was the only treatment that had both spot & strip treatments. The spot treatment reduced costs from $708 p/acre to $285 p/acre due to reduced material used. The least expensive treatment was CP spot at $279 p/acre. The peach yields showed a significant increase over the control for all treatments. The Sudan increased yield for the CP & TeloneC35 but not for the Inline or MB. The strip treatments had higher yields than the spot treatments for TeloneC35 both with & w/out the Sudan. The highest yield was from TeloneC35 strip w/Sudan followed by TeloneC35 strip w/out Sudan. The poorest performance was with Inline. MB was the 2nd most effective fumigant followed by CP. The ranking of the results for the net income above harvest & treatment costs were almost the same as for the yields. The ADODR monitors this SCA by maintaining a complete file of the agreement, reviewing the annual reports, & conducting meetings with the cooperator during the course of the agreement.

4. Accomplishments

Last Modified: 06/23/2017
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