No. 17 Article 1/July 20, 2007

Increasing Implementation of IPM in Illinois Corn and Soybean Acres: Enhancing the Financial Incentives

We have encouraged readers numerous times to follow sound IPM tactics in making decisions about managing insects, weeds, and diseases. Critics of IPM often try to build a case against this time-tested paradigm, arguing for more of an "insurance" approach against pests. As an example, we've witnessed the treatment of large numbers of corn acres this season with tank-mixes of a fungicide and an insecticide. In many instances, pesticides were applied with little or no scouting input or regard for thresholds. Are there any financial incentives available that may help producers shift in the direction of IPM-based pest management?

Mike Brewer, professor of entomology and IPM coordinator at Michigan State University, and his colleagues have developed a Web site--"Grower Incentives for IPM"--introducing producers to financial and technical resources available in USDA Conservation Programs that may lead to increased adoption of IPM tactics. Another Web site from the same group provides links to state-specific financial resources available for increasing IPM adoption. This same site provides links to Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS) Web sites with additional information. The site is a product of the North Central Region IPM/NRCS work group, hosted by the IPM Extension Program at Michigan State University in collaboration with the IPM Institute of North America. Sponsorship of this project was provided by the USDA Cooperative States Research, Education, and Extension Service (CSREES) North Central Region IPM Center. We commend Mike Brewer and his collaborators at MSU for their leadership in developing these Web sites.--Mike Gray

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