California citrus

Latest DATOC Report Highlights ACP/HLB Projects

Brian German Fruits & Vegetables, Industry

The Data Analysis and Tactical Operations Center (DATOC) recently released its first quarterly report for 2019.  The DATOC report summarized some of the current projects related to combating Huanglongbing (HLB) and the Asian citrus psyllid (ACP) in California citrus.  The DATOC was initially formed in 2016 through a partnership between the Citrus Pest and Disease Prevention Program and the Citrus Research Board as a means to provide rapid, flexible, and responsive management plans for ACP and HLB.

DATOC reportOne of the projects that DATOC has been involved with is the evaluation of what constitutes exposure to HLB infection with a focus on residential areas of Southern California within the quarantine zone.  After feedback from the Citrus Pest and Disease Prevention Committee (CPDPC) the research also included commercial exposure in the final report.  The analysis included data surveyed from 2012 to June 2018, comprised of 100,162 individual trees, including 659 with positive HLB infections, and 134,977 ACP detections.

The CPDPC established a task force back in January for the purpose of developing a list of recommended actions for commercial citrus growers to take to enhance the protection of groves from HLB.  The DATOC participated in the development of the first draft of recommendations with corresponding science to support the suggested actions.  A revised second draft was submitted by DATOC after incorporating task force input and the task force is now working to produce a finalized document that will be available for growers in the near future.

At the request of California Department of Agriculture (CDFA), the DATOC established an improved sampling method to be integrated into CDFA’s “Action Plan for Asian Citrus Psyllid and Huanglongbing (Citrus Greening) in California.”  The revised protocol incorporates information gathered from disease development patterns in commercial citrus in Texas and Florida.

The DATOC report also noted that in the first month of the quarter four new members were added to the program, contributing more experience and expertise to further advance DATOC analyses.

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Brian German

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Ag News Director, AgNet West