At the national level, CIPM interacts extensively with the United States Department of Agriculture, Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and the Center for Plant Health Science and Technology (USAD-APHIS-CPHST) to optimize information technologies and IPM tools that focus on CPHST’s mandate to provide information, tools and technologies that inform science-based regulatory and policy decisions to prevent invasive pest species from entering the USA. Invasive species may be considered one of the grand challenges of our modern agricultural and global trade systems and CIPM is at the forefront of designing information and decision-based tools to prevent the introduction of destructive pest species. CIPM also develops and implements tools/programs and coordinates expert personnel to develop rapid response and IPM-based methods if or when new invasive species enter the USA. CIPM personnel also are engaged in policy development, national program reviews, educational/informational websites and other activities that impact national IPM efforts.
ipmPIPE (IPM Pest Information Platform for Extension and Education)
Description: The ipmPIPE was first developed as a response to the threat of soybean rust (SBR). Since that time the ipmPIPE portfolio has grown to include “PIPEs“ for soybean aphid (now discontinued), legume diseases, cucurbit downy mildew, pecan nut casebearer and pecan scab, Southern corn rust, and onion pests. CIPM participated in national planning and coordination and has provided financial management of most of these projects. CIPM has had minimal interaction with other ipmPIPEs: the Western Specialty Crops ipmPIPE, the North Central ipmPIPE, and the Pennsylvania PIPE.
Impact: The SBR PIPE has been estimated to provide benefits of approximately $200 million per year nationally. Although some of this impact results from crop protection, most is derived from avoidance of unnecessary fungicide applications so environmental impacts are readily imputed. Other PIPEs have yet to document similar impacts as effectively, but those impacts certainly exist. As important, the ipmPIPE provides a long-overdue model for effectively applying modern information and communication technology to the challenges of extending and implementing research-based knowledge in the field.
EIPMDSS (Expert IPM Decision Support System)
Description: This project creates, maintains, and supports a variety of national IPMrelated databases and online tools. The suite of products has changed over the years and currently includes Crop Profile and Pest Management Strategic Plan databases, the Proposal and Project Management System (PPMS) used by all Regional IPM Centers, and the Interagency Projects Database. In the coming year this project will lead revision and integration of the IPMCenters.org and IPM.gov websites.
Impact: The online database currently holds 165 Pest Management Strategic Plans and 781 Crop Profiles. These documents are routinely used by EPA, USDA and other agencies to inform regulatory decisions and help document stakeholder priorities. The PPMS system saves countless staff hours from Regional IPM Centers in administering grant programs and maintaining project accountability.
Description: The industry PIPE (iPiPE) is an Internet-based information platform that provides industry participants (including large companies and individual crop consultants) with tools and models for managing and analyzing data. Unlike the ipmPIPE, iPiPE does not display data publicly. The iPiPE was designed with the following goals: i) Promote data collection and sharing among agricultural stakeholders and PPQ, ii) Facilitate the monitoring of endemic and exotic pests, and iii) Integrate with government and university platforms including the ipmPIPE.
Impact: Potential impacts of a mature system to agricultural stakeholders include: i) improved modeling tools for prediction of pest outbreaks, ii) reducing unnecessary permitting and export certification costs; iii) Providing historical records to support the declaration of pest free areas; and iv) Tracking of temporal changes in pest distributions.
Management of Vegetable Grafting Specialty Crop Research Initiative
Description: CIPM provides management and program leadership for the USDA Specialty Crop Research Initiative (SCRI) project “Development of Grafting Technology to Improve Sustainability and Competitiveness of the US Fruiting Vegetable Industry”. The project is funded by a $2.49 million grant that includes 6 institutions and 48 private companies. We have assembled a multi-institutional domestic to international team that is stakeholder-driven, systems-oriented, collaborative, and trans-disciplinary to address the emergent critical need to advance the sustainable production of fruiting vegetables using grafting technologies. Private partners include every major sector of the industry to enhance rapid and informed progress. Dr. Louws is PI. The work plan is coordinated around four stakeholder identified objectives: 1) optimize grafting technologies to reduce costs of producing and distributing grafted seedlings and make the technology readily available to US open-field producers; 2) integrate discovery-based, applied and on-farm research to optimize field production outcomes; 3) evaluate economic and social metrics to guide the direction of emerging grafting technology advancements; and 4) translate outcomes and facilitate the application of grafted plants as a significant tool in vegetable crop production.
Impact: Though started just 1 year ago, this project will have a pivotal role in determining the future importance and potential of grafted herbaceous vegetables in USA open field production systems. By linking key private and public stakeholders, grafting technologies will be advanced for optimum use in the USA.
The Pesticide Environmental Stewardship (PES) Website
Description: The Pesticide Environmental Stewardship (PES) website is a central repository (web portal) where anyone can access information on proper pesticide handling and environmental stewardship. Content is targeted toward crop producers, commercial/professional applicators, and pesticide dealers, with a separate section for homeowners. The website is intended for a national audience with links to state-specific compliance information, where available. All PES content is integrated with eXtension.
Impact: PES is designed to be a comprehensive and national website on pesticide environmental stewardship with associated training modules.