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PARC and CABI to commercialize bio-pesticides in Pakistan

Bio-pesticides are safe and environment friendly: Dr. Muhammad Azeem Khan

(Islamabad):  A consultative workshop on “commercially available bio-pesticides and biological control options on pest in Pakistan in the context of the expected new regulations” was organized by Centre for Agriculture and Bioscience International (CABI), on 15th December, 2020 held at Ramada Hotel, Islamabad. The workshop was attended by high officials of Pakistan Agriculture Research Council, Ministry of Climate Change, Department of Plant Protection and various research, academic and private organizations.

Dr. Azeem Khan, Chairman PARC while expressing his thoughts said agriculture provides food, feed and security to the nation as it is the mainstay of economy of Pakistan. The wide use of pesticides in agriculture has contaminated the highly value-added commodities.Chemical based control in crops has actually increased the pest problems. It has now been realized that chemical and other factors have been detrimental in safe environment.Therefore, polices are being shifted to non-chemical methods. Recently biopesticides have received much attention as an alternative to chemical pesticides. Commercial use of biopesticides in agriculture worldwide has boosted and the prospect for use of bio-pesticides in Pakistan is enormous.While the technological innovation in developing bio-pesticides also exist in the country.

He further added, during 1993 PARC and other stakeholders managed to produce two bio-pesticides in the country namely Nimbokil and Nimboli. In 2008 this Council took further initiative to produce Bio-pesticides, Bioherbicides and Organic Nutrients. In Pakistan, to boost their use in agriculture, commercial availability of biopesticides may prove a good step toward organic agriculture and help in the production of pesticide contamination-free agri products. CABI’s initiated dialogue with all relevant stakeholders will ultimately lead towards promotion and commercial availability of bio-pesticides and will help to solve the legal barriers for commercialization of bio-pesticides.There is a need for coordination for government and private sector in bringing some policies for encouraging bio-pesticides easy registration. Bearing all this in mind, I believe this workshop, which brought together the best minds from all relevant stakeholders will produce tangible solutions and effective strategies for use of bio-pesticides in Pakistan. As an alternative, use of bio-pesticides are widely considered as safe and environmentally friendly.

At the occasion Senior Regional Director, Dr. Baber E. Bajwa while highlighting about workshop remarked that this forum is to gather all relevant stakeholders to produce tangible solutions for Pakistan’s greatest challenges in agriculture and environment. Chemical based control program in crops has actually increased the pest problems and disturbed the agro-ecosystem.

(Ghulam Shabbir Mirza)
Incharge (PR&P) PARC
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