In Peru, potato farmers rely on fungicides to control late blight, the most important disease, and insecticides to control a variety of pests. The study aims to estimate the environmental and human health risk associated with pesticide use through the use of the environmental impact quotient (EIQ) to represent the total hazard posed by all pesticides applied over different potato cultivars.
About half of the fungicide (total formulation) was applied per hectare in Huamachuco (0.8 kg/ha), compared to the other two locations: 2.0 kg/ha in Chaglla and 2.4 kg/ha in La Encañada. Insecticide use in Chaglla was only 0.38 kg/ha while in Huamachuco it was about 0.59 kg/ha and in La Encañada over 2.28 kg/ha. Environmental impact values per hectare were about three to four times higher in La Encañada than in either of the other two locations primarily due to heavy use of highly hazardous insecticides. Lack of correlation of environmental impact with productivity indicated opportunities for improvement.
The high degree of variability in products used among locations as well as the different toxicological properties of the products used makes a purely amount-based comparison of pesticide use less illuminating. The EIQ was helpful in providing information on the potential environmental effect of current application practices. Modifying pesticide application patterns through adequate training on more efficient pesticide use and on integrated pest management strategies would be an effective way to reduce farmer health and environmental impacts in Peru.
Authors: Willy Pradel, Gregory Forbes, Oscar Ortiz, Donald Cole, Susitha Wanigaratne, Luis Maldonado, Willy Pradel, Gregory Forbes, Oscar Ortiz, Donald Cole, Susitha Wanigaratne, Luis Maldonado
Subjects: Crop Management
Publication Date: 2009
Identifier: ISBN 978-92-9060-379-5
Rights: CIP publications contribute important development information to the public arena. Readers are encouraged to quote or reproduce material from them in their own publications. As copyright holder CIP requests acknowledgement, and a copy of the publication where the citation or material appears.
HOW TO CITE
Pradel, W. F. "Use of the environmental impact quotient to estimate impacts of pesticide usage in three Peruvian potato production areas. International Potato Center [CIP]." Integrated Crop Management Division. Working paper. Lima, Peru (2009).