Pecan entomologist Angelita Acebes joins the UGA Tifton campus

By Clint Thompson, Julie Jernigan, University of Georgia

New University of Georgia Cooperative Extension pecan entomologist Angelita Acebes hopes to find more effective, sustainable solutions for Georgia farmers managing pest insects.

Since March 1, when she started her new position on the UGA Tifton campus, Acebes has identified the most pressing pest problems for pecan growers, including black and yellow pecan aphids, hickory shuckworms, pecan weevils and ambrosia beetles. Continue reading

UGA research aimed at stopping gummy stem blight in the greenhouse

By Clint Thompson, University of Georgia

Georgia watermelon growers who have a targeted, informed disease management plan for gummy stem blight disease could save money and lessen the environmental impact of producing this favorite summertime fruit.

University of Georgia horticulturist Cecilia McGregor, along with fellow UGA scientists Marin Brewer and Bhabesh Dutta, studies the impact of reduced fungicide use through early detection of gummy stem blight in watermelons. Continue reading

Federal inspections report rodents, unsanitary worker practices behind egg recall

A report from the Food and Drug Administration reports rodents and unsanitary conditions at a North Carolina egg distributor linked to a major salmonella contamination. It’s a case where lack of integrated pest management had serious health consequences and created food safety issues.

Inspectors found “unacceptable rodent activity” and dirty equipment at the Rose Acre Farms egg operation in Pantego, N.C., during visits from March 26 to April 11, according to a U.S. Food and Drug Administration report. They also noted employees touching dirty floors, equipment and their bodies without washing their hands. Continue reading

Webinar: Considerations for Dissemination and Adoption of School-Based Childhood Obesity Prevention Programs

Dr. Leslie Cunningham-Sabo will present a webinar titled “Considerations for Dissemination and Adoption of School-Based Childhood Obesity Prevention Programs” from 3- 4 pm Eastern on April 23, 2018. The seminar can be viewed via WebEx as well as in Room 2311 of the Waterfront Building, Washington, DC. This seminar has been approved by the Commission on Dietetic Registration for 1.0 Continuing Professional Education Unit (CEU).*

This seminar is part of the Institute of Food Safety and Nutrition (IFSN) Seminar Series. These monthly seminars aim to disseminate new knowledge; engage with partners and stakeholders; and inspire the next generation of food safety and nutrition experts.  For full information on the series, visit the seminar webpageContinue reading

Identify pests before applying pesticides

by Amanda Tedrow, University of Georgia

Pesticides, which include insecticides, fungicides, herbicides and more, can contain organic or conventional ingredients. People use them in homes and workplaces, on farms and in gardens, and in other places where they want to control pests like weeds, insects, fungi, rodents and plant viruses.

University of Georgia Cooperative Extension urges all Georgians to learn more about the safe use, storage and disposal of pesticides. The UGA Extension Pesticide Safety Education Program promotes the safe, responsible use of pesticides by individuals and commercial groups by providing training programs, materials and educational resources that cover pest identification, personal safety, safe storage and safe disposal of pesticides. Continue reading

Blueberry Pest Management Field Day tackles integrated approach to gall midge and spotted wing drosophila

By Cristina deRevere, University of Georgia

With spring approaching, blueberry farmers focus on maximizing their 2018 yields, which means finding new ways to deal with pests like gall midge and spotted wing drosophila.

To help these growers stay on top of potential pest problems, University of Georgia integrated pest management (IPM) researchers hosted a spring field day in Alma, Georgia, on Feb 21. Over 70 regional farmers from several southwestern Georgia counties, such as Bacon, Clinch, Appling and Pierce, attended the half-day event. Continue reading

NIFA announces partners for SARE

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) today announced partners to serve as the National Reporting, Coordination and Communications Office (NRCCO) and as the four regional Host Institutions for the Sustainable Agriculture Research and Education program (SARE). NIFA’s SARE program supports farmer-focused solutions that boost production, increase profitability, promote environmental stewardship, and enhance quality of life in rural communities.

The NRCCO for the SARE program and the four regional SARE host institutions will serve for five years from Fiscal Year (FY) 2018 through 2022. The NRCCO works with NIFA and the national SARE Operations Committee to administer national reporting, coordination, and communications. Each regional host institution collaborates with NIFA to implement regional competitive grant and outreach programs as guided by the Regional Administrative Council (AC). Continue reading