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Pest and Disease Hazards and Sustainability in African Agriculture

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  03 October 2008

Abe Goldman
Department of Geography, University of Florida, Gainesville, FL 32611–7315, USA


Surveys of the relationship between pests and diseases and crop sustainability in several areas of Kenya, Nigeria, and other regions of Africa indicate that the production of numerous crops has declined sharply as a result of major pest and disease outbreaks, and others are threatened with major decline because of a surge in virulence of an endemic pest or disease, the introduction of a virulent exotic pest or pathogen, or because a system of control used previously has collapsed. Many of the crops that have declined were already experiencing reduced economic demand. In other cases, crop sustainability has been preserved by vigorous farmer responses or by the intervention of national and international research institutions. Most pests and pathogens, however, remain within tolerable bounds most of the time, though this often requires the use of chemical or cultural controls, or the availability of adequate land to compensate for losses. As land availability declines, more strenuous management efforts may be needed to sustain productivity.

Research Article
Copyright © Cambridge University Press 1996

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