A survey exploring farmers and stakeholders’ perceptions in the control of medfly populations with the innovative attractant Biodelear. A case study in the island of Chios in Greece. (LIFE13 ENV GR/000414)
Abstract: A survey was conducted in the frameworks of the project LIFE-Biodelear
(LIFE13/ENVGR/000414), “Addressing Medfly with an innovative friendly attractant through an Integrated Pest Management Strategy”. The aim of the survey was to monitor the socioeconomic impact of the project, as far as the awareness of environmental issues associated with pesticides use and the perception of stakeholders on the developed integrated strategy to address the Mediterranean fruit fly (medfly) Ceratitis capitata with mass-trapping approaches using the attractant biodelear is concerned. Biodelear is a novel, low cost, environmentally friendly, female-specific bait for medfly, that consists of a mixture of attracting compounds such us pyrazines, pyranones and amorphous nitrogen-based polymer. Tailoraa ed to the target stakeholders’ group, three different questionnaires were developed: (a) for the farmers involved in project activities, (b) for other farmers from Greece and other Mediterranean countries, and (c) policy makers and regional/local authorities from Greece and other Mediterranean countries.
All three questionnaires included semi-closed questions and responses were unique and
anonymous. All the farmers (100 %) involved in the project stated that they would have
purchased Biodelear if it was commercially available. Additionally, most farmers (67 %)
responded positively in using the attractant Biodelear and almost all of them (96 %) would
adopt mass trapping with Biodelear. Farmers also agreed that the use of Biodelear in citrus
orchards could contribute to the establishment of a healthier environment and to the
improvement of the quality of citrus fruits. Finally, 69.9 % of the additional stakeholders
approached expected that the use of the mass trapping technique with the attractant Biodelear could contribute to better, non-toxic, environmentally, and human friendly farming practices.
Overall, the results demonstrate rather strong support for both Biodelear and the mass trapping strategy developed, highlighting the need for development and adoption of environmentally sound pest management approached.