National Forests Pests and Diseases Committee Annual report 2019

April/May newsletter – Forestry South Africa publishes inaugural National Forests Pests and Diseases Committee Annual Report

The conclusive 17-page National Forests Pests and Diseases Committee Annual Report is testament to the collaboration, commitment, expertise and dedication embedded within the Forestry Sector.

These attributes are particularly encouraging when tackling the threats posed by pests and diseases, as it is only through sector-wide collaboration, that we can respond quickly and effectively and find cost-effective solutions. The public-private partnership of the Sirex Control Programme is a clear example of this, illustrating the effectiveness of Industry and Government collaboration, in ensuring all tree growers, regardless of size and scope, can have access to successful and sustainable control measures.

This comprehensive report showcases the research that often goes unnoticed but provides a frontline of defence for the Sector as a whole.

By summarising the research efforts in this way, Forestry South Africa (FSA) members will not only see how their money is being effectively spent but understand the leverage it gives the Sector when applying for additional research funding, specifically from Government.”, explains Ronald Heath, FSA Director of Research and Protection. “We will always need to search for new and improved measures to combat the threats to the Sector. Knowing that our Sector can produce research of the highest calibre through collaboration, often involving Governmental and International partnerships, fills me with confidence that our Sector is suitably capacitated for the future.

National Forests Pests and Diseases Committee and Working Groups

The National Forests Pests and Diseases Committee’s focus is on the prevention of new pest and disease threats in South Africa, overseeing the shared objectives of industry-led working groups, that drive the implementation of certain pest and disease objectives of the National Forest Protection Strategy developed by the former Department of Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries (DAFF).

The working groups featured in the report, Eucalyptus Pest and Pathogen working Group, Sirex Steering Committee, Wattle Rust Working Group and the Timber Industry Pesticide Working Group (TIPWG), have proven to be effective at executing focused industry interventions. Functioning largely independently to manage specific priority pests and diseases of affected FSA members.

National Forest Pest and Diseases Committee Annual Report

The report provides an overview of each working group, including their mission statement, funding and focus areas. It also covers the active research being undertaken or commissioned by the working group, as well as any research that has recently concluded. This is summarised in terms of the project aims and status. The report outlines the working groups 2019 work programme, along with a summary of 2020 research requirements and provides a summary of all research outputs.

To download the National Forest Pests and Diseases Committee Annual Report – click here.

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