IFG

Vegetable production in Togo and potential impact of pesticide use practices on the environment

Lakpo Koku AGBOYI1,2*, Koffi Moïse DJADE3, Koffi Mensah AHADJI-DABLA2, Guillaume Koffivi KETOH2, Yaovi NUTO2 and Isabelle Adolé GLITHO2

1UR Défense des Cultures et Biotechnologie Végétale, Institut Togolais de Recherche Agronomique (ITRA), B.P 1163, Lomé, Togo.
2Laboratoire d’Entomologie Appliquée, Université de Lomé, 01 B.P 1515 Lomé 01, Togo.
3Ecole Supérieure d’Agronomie, Université de Lomé, 01 B.P 1515 Lomé 01, Togo.
*Corresponding author; E-mail: This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. ; BP: 1163, Lomé, Togo; Tel: +228 90 28 88 82, Fax: +228 22 25 15 59

ABSTRACT

In West Africa, market gardening is considered one of the sectors in agriculture that consumes lots of pesticides. In order to study (i) the principal protection practices of vegetables and (ii) the inherent environmental risks to pesticide use practices, a survey was carried in Togo from 2010 to 2011. A random selection of 161 farmers were interviewed on their farms, which are distributed over the most important vegetable production sites located in dry Savanna, forests and littoral zones of Togo. The results showed that 88% of farmers interviewed responded that, insects are the most important vegetable pests in Togo. Crop protection practices are primarily based on excessive use of synthetic pesticides which in most cases include organophosphates (27.3%) and pyrethroids (18.2%), known to be dangerous to human health and environment. Despite the excessive use of pesticides, farmers revealed that insect pests continue to cause serious damages, which is an indication that they have developed a resistance to pesticides. Moreover, about 80% of farmers did not have adequate materials for handling and application of pesticides and are thus exposed to pesticide poisoning. An integrated pest management programme based on crop rotation, biological control and biopesticides is discussed.

Keywords: Farmers, market gardening, crop protection, pests’ resistance.

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