Scientists in Cheshire have developed a new attractant to help monitor a serious economic pest of soft fruits including grapes, plums, cherries, currants, strawberries, raspberries and blackberries.
With its rapid spread across the globe, the fruit fly species Spotted Winged Drosophilid, or Drosophila suzukii, is on the alert list of The European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization (EPPO).
The International Pheromone Systems team has spent three years developing a special formulation and a trap that they hoped would perform better than the ones already available. Independent trials and analysis in Switzerland have shown that the new products perform 300 percent better than two market leading products.
International Pheromone System’s technical manager Dr Sam Jones said: “The global fresh fruit trade and the ability of the larvae to hide fruit undetected until after transportation are both helping facilitate the increasing distribution of this pest.
“Given its very rapid spread throughout the UK and the rest of Europe in recent years we decided it was important to invest resources into a product that will help fruit farmers and importers monitor and trap these insects.
“We are delighted that our products performed so well in the trials, and we are now able to offer our formulation to customers.”