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Publication Detail
ISPPS WP 2002-02: Ex-ante Assessment of Diagnostic Kits for Banana Viral Diseases

The Philippine banana industry is currently one of the top agricultural export earners. The occurrence of pests and diseases poses a major problem in banana production, resulting in increased production costs and significant economic losses to farmers. This problem has been addresses through the following: a) early detection of the disease and eradication of infected plants; b) control of insect vectors; c) the use of virus-free planting materials; and d) quarantine of areas free of the disease. But because there’s still a presence of insect vectors, re-infection is still experienced. Early detection of the disease, thus, provides opportunities for limiting its spreading and the protection of healthy uninfected plants. Note, however, that early detection of plant diseases, even without the observed symptoms, can already be done using diagnostic kits. For banana, diagnostic kits available are for the detection of viral diseases such as banana bunchy top, banana mosaic, and banana bract mosaic. The advantages of using diagnostic kits are the detection of disease infection at the earliest possible time even if symptoms are still absent. USING DIAGNOSTIC KITS WILL ENTAIL ADDITIONAL COSTS TO THE FARMERS, BUT RESULTS SHOWS THAT FARMERS IN THE TWO STUDY AREAS (ORIENTAL MINDORO AND DAVAO) SHOW FAVORABLE RESPONSE TO THE TECHNOLOGY. IN FACT, IN DAVAO, FARMERS ARE WILLING TO PAY FOR DIAGNOSTIC KIT MORE THAN ITS PRICE, PRIMARILY DUE TO HIGH INCIDENCE OF PESTS AND DISEASES IN THE AREA. Farmers are willing to have their planting materials be diagnosed but preferred it to be done in the field if there is the available technology. But such is not the case and the current technology requires laboratory facilities that need highly competent personnel and high investment cost. It could also be noted that diagnosis in the laboratory is actually part of the process of producing good quality planting materials. In addition, effort must be done to promote and disseminate good quality planting materials and show the importance of technology to the farmers, together with adequate information on how to use it.

UPLB Center for Strategic Planning and Policy Studies
Authors Keywords
Calderon, Reynan P.; biotechnology; agricultural technology; agriculture sector; plant diseases; viral diseases; diagnostic kits technology;
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Published in 2002 and available in the ISPPS Library or can be downloaded as full text Downloaded 0 times since November 25, 2011