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ARS Home » Pacific West Area » Hilo, Hawaii » Daniel K. Inouye U.S. Pacific Basin Agricultural Research Center » Tropical Crop and Commodity Protection Research » Research » Publications at this Location » Publication #404885

Research Project: Development of New and Improved Surveillance, Detection, Control, and Management Technologies for Fruit Flies and Invasive Pests of Tropical and Subtropical Crops

Location: Tropical Crop and Commodity Protection Research

Title: Establishing an integrated pest management for coffee berry borer (Hypothenemus hampei) in Hawaii and Puerto Rico: Achievements and challenges

item ARISTIZABAL, LUIS - University Of Hawaii
item Johnson, Melissa
item MARINO, YOBANA - University Of Puerto Rico
item BAYMAN, PAUL - University Of Puerto Rico
item WRIGHT, MARK - University Of Hawaii

Submitted to: Insects
Publication Type: Review Article
Publication Acceptance Date: 6/27/2023
Publication Date: 7/3/2023
Citation: Aristizabal, L., Johnson, M.A., Marino, Y., Bayman, P., Wright, M. 2023. Establishing an integrated pest management for coffee berry borer (Hypothenemus hampei) in Hawaii and Puerto Rico: Achievements and challenges. Insects. 14.

Interpretive Summary: This article addresses several aspects related to the biology, ecology, and management of coffee berry borer (CBB) that are critical to the development and establishment of an IPM strategy that is economically feasible, environmentally sustainable, and has a high likelihood of being adopted by coffee growers. After a decade of living with CBB in Hawaii, some similarities and differences with Puerto Rico can be seen. As in Puerto Rico, very few growers in Hawaii currently use traps or tree monitoring to inform spray decisions. Instead, growers may either visually inspect some small number of berries for CBB presence to inform spray times or are on a calendar spray system whereby fields are sprayed monthly regardless of infestation levels. Subsidies for B. bassiana are still available to growers in Hawaii, but only a small percentage of the total farms in the State take advantage of this program. At the core of these issues is a combination of an aging farmer population, a disconnect between farm owners and the issues that are occurring on their fields, and high costs that prohibit many growers from implementing the management that they know is needed but which they cannot afford.

Technical Abstract: Coffee berry borer (CBB, Hypothenemus hampei Ferrari) is the most serious insect pest of coffee worldwide, causing significant reductions in yield and quality. Following the introduction of CBB to Puerto Rico (2007) and Hawaii (2010), researchers, extension agents, industry representatives and coffee growers have worked together to develop an integrated pest management (IPM) program that is both effective and economically feasible for each island. Since the introduction of the IPM program in Hawaii, research efforts have led to a better understanding of CBB population dynamics, as well as optimized monitoring, cultural practices, and commercial Beauveria bassiana applications. As a result of these efforts, a substantial reduction in average CBB infestation and an increase in coffee yields and quality have been documented in Hawaii over the last decade. However, significant challenges remain in addressing the high production and labor costs, limited availability of labor, and a lack of training for field workers. In Hawaii, current research efforts are aimed at the introduction of parasitoid wasps as biological controls, and the implementation of precision technology (mobile applications, spray drones) to reduce costs and labor. Although considerable effort has gone into the development and implementation of CBB IPM for Hawaii and Puerto Rico coffee agroecosystems, the adoption of these strategies by coffee farmers needs to be increased. More diversified methods of outreach and education are needed to reach the wide variety of growers across Hawaii and Puerto Rico. Significant gaps exist in the ability and willingness of growers and workers to access and digest information online, emphasizing the importance of on-farm workshops and farmer-to-farmer teaching. Additional methods of training are needed to help coffee farmers and field workers learn how to properly conduct cultural controls and optimize the use of biological control agents such as B. bassiana.