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Identifying appropriate strategies for reducing virus and weevil losses in sweetpotato production systems in Papua New Guinea and Australia

Sweet potato is a major subsistence food in PNG and an increasingly important cash crop on domestic markets. ACIAR has supported several projects addressing factors limiting production, such as soil fertility, pests and diseases, as well as socio-economic aspects of marketing. Project SMCN/2004/071 clearly demonstrated that viruses are implicated in yield decline. However, the role of weevils was not evaluated. The specific objectives of this project are to assess the value of pathogen-tested planting materials in reducing the impact of virus diseases, and to identify the most promising management tactics for weevils in specific production systems.