Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Methyl Bromide Alternatives Indicated For North Carolina Tomato Production

Date:
February 3, 2009
Source:
American Society for Horticultural Science
Summary:
Researchers have analyzed the economic feasibility of chemical alternatives to MeBr in the plasticulture production of tomatoes in the mountain region of North Carolina.

This is field production of tomatoes in North Carolina.
Credit: Frank J. Louws

Methyl bromide (MeBr) is a highly effective broad-spectrum fumigant used extensively in U.S. agriculture to control a wide variety of pests. Under the Montreal protocol of 1991, however, MeBr was defined as one of the chemicals that contributed to the depletion of the stratospheric ozone layer, resulting in an incremental reduction in the amount of MeBr produced and imported in the U.S. In January 2005, a total phase out of MeBr (except for emergency and critical-use exceptions) was imposed.

The U.S. Department of Agriculture has indicated that the phaseout of MeBr as a preplant soil fumigant may have substantial impact on the production levels of many agricultural crops. No known single alternative fumigant, chemical, or other technology exists that can readily substitute for MeBr in efficacy, cost, ease of use, availability, worker safety, and environmental safety.

Fresh-market tomatoes were planted on 124,400 acres in the United States in 2007, with a gross production value of almost $1300 million. Southeastern states, including Georgia, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, and Virginia, accounted for about 17% of the total tomato production in the U.S. Tomatoes accounted for 25% of the use of MeBr in the U.S., making tomato growers one of the main groups impacted by the MeBr regulations.

In a recent study published in the October 2008 issue of HortTechnology, researchers at North Carolina State University and the USDA analyzed the economic feasibility of chemical alternatives to MeBr in the plasticulture production of tomatoes in the mountain region of North Carolina.

Lead authors of the study Olha Sydorovych and Frank Louws explained the methodology, stating that they first estimated the costs and returns associated with growing, harvesting, and marketing tomatoes in a plasticulture production system including preplant fumigation with MeBR. Second, they evaluated the economic feasibility of the alternatives to MeBr using a partial budget methodology.

The study results indicated that technically and economically feasible alternatives to MeBr for tomato production exist in growing conditions similar those of Fletcher, NC. Howeer, the researchers advised growers to estimate individual production, harvesting, and marketing costs based on their own production techniques, price expectations, local supply of labor, and market situation before selecting an alternative preplant fumigant, noting that "actual costs and returns will vary from grower to grower due to market situation, labor supply, age and condition of equipment, managerial skills, and many other factors."

The researchers anticipate a need for further research and better infrastructure to enable more commercial farmers to have the capacity to adopt alternatives to MeBr. "As more on-farm research and demonstrations are conducted, complimented with public and private technical support and extension, it is anticipated that growers will implement alternative pest management practices on larger acreage, moving toward greater reliance on one or more of the alternatives documented in this study", they concluded.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by American Society for Horticultural Science. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Sydorovych, Olha, Safley, Charles D., Welker, Rob M., Ferguson, Lisa M., Monks, David W., Jennings, Katie, Driver, Jim, Louws, Frank J. Economic Evaluation of Methyl Bromide Alternatives for the Production of Tomatoes in North Carolina. HortTechnology, 2008 18: 705-713 [link]

Cite This Page:

American Society for Horticultural Science. "Methyl Bromide Alternatives Indicated For North Carolina Tomato Production." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 3 February 2009. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090203142514.htm>.
American Society for Horticultural Science. (2009, February 3). Methyl Bromide Alternatives Indicated For North Carolina Tomato Production. ScienceDaily. Retrieved September 23, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090203142514.htm
American Society for Horticultural Science. "Methyl Bromide Alternatives Indicated For North Carolina Tomato Production." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/02/090203142514.htm (accessed September 23, 2014).

Share This



More Plants & Animals News

Tuesday, September 23, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Raw: Tiger Kills Man at India Zoo

Raw: Tiger Kills Man at India Zoo

AP (Sep. 23, 2014) A white tiger killed a young man who climbed over a fence at the New Delhi zoo and jumped into the animal's enclosure on Tuesday, a spokesman said. (Sept. 23) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Cat Lovers Flock to Los Angeles

Cat Lovers Flock to Los Angeles

AFP (Sep. 22, 2014) The best funny internet cat videos are honoured at LA's Feline Film Festival. Duration: 00:56 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com
Washed-Up 'Alien Hairballs' Are Actually Algae

Washed-Up 'Alien Hairballs' Are Actually Algae

Newsy (Sep. 22, 2014) Green balls of algae washed up on Sydney, Australia's Dee Why Beach. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Raw: San Diego Zoo Welcomes Cheetah Cubs

Raw: San Diego Zoo Welcomes Cheetah Cubs

AP (Sep. 20, 2014) The San Diego Zoo has welcomed two Cheetah cubs to its Safari Park. The nearly three-week-old female cubs are being hand fed and are receiving around the clock care. (Sept. 20) Video provided by AP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories


Plants & Animals

Earth & Climate

Fossils & Ruins

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins