Methods for Detection and Screening of False Codling Moth within produce in Sub Saharan Africa

Flamingo Horticulture International seeks innovative solutions to detect and screen False Codling Moth in the production of chilli plants or in the chillies themselves.

Funding Details
When

Registration Opens

08/12/2021

Registration Closes

28/01/2022

Award

Opportunity to present solution at a pitch day attended by representatives from Flamingo Horticulture International. GBP 25,000 seed funding is available to the successful finalist.

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The Innovation Exchange challenge competition, delivered by KTN Global Alliance Africa, is supporting Flamingo Horticulture International to identify innovative approaches in pest control for the detection and screening of False Codling Moth, Thaumatotibia leucotreta (Meyrick). The False Codling Moth (FCM), is an economically damaging pest impacting a variety of alternative host plants across its natural range in sub-Saharan Africa. For this AgriFood Global Alliance Africa iX Challenge competition, Flamingo Horticulture International seeks innovative solutions to detect and screen FCM.

Challenge Background

Flamingo Horticulture International

Flamingo Horticulture International is a horticultural business with a worldwide footprint that covers farming, production, sales and marketing of fresh produce and flowers. Flamingo Horticulture International has farms situated in Kenya (near Mt Kenya and Lake Naivasha) growing many products such, beans, broccoli, spring onions, herbs, roses, and chillies.

False Codling Moth

The False Codling Moth (Thaumatotibia leucotreta) is a native pest of significant value affecting food and horticultural products in Africa. The moth, and subsequent eggs and larvae, are present on more than 70 host plants, including chilli, flowers, mangos, bananas and avocado. The False Codling Moth (FCM) is well adapted for warm climates and is endemic in Africa. Current control includes the use of cultural, physical, biological and chemical methods.

To control the pest and prevent it from spreading to other geographies strict regulations prevent the export of infested produce out of East Africa. Therefore, the presence of False Codling Moth in any crop will result in both lowering the value of produce due to direct damage and yield unusable harvests due to the inability to market and export infested goods.

Infestation by the moth is a year-round challenge but peaks in its population, and therefore infestations are seen in November through to March.  Current control methods include the use of chemical pesticides and inspection by pickers and packers of products.

Flamingo Horticulture International grows chillies within the Nairobi region in Kenya.

This challenge relates to the detection and identification of FCM within chilli plants, which is currently achieved by visual inspection. Flamingo Horticulture International would like to see approaches that could enhance detection and screening of FCM within produce. Solutions could focus on detection and identification of FCM during production, at harvest, during grading of chillies, or immediately prior to export during packaging.

 

Also see our parallel challenge for managing false codling moth in growing crops: click here for details.

Download the brochure about both challenges here.

Global Alliance Innovation Exchange

Global Alliance Innovation Exchange is an Innovate UK KTN programme specially designed to help UK and international organisations search for game-changing solutions to innovation challenges. Through the programme, we support innovation transfer by matching industry or societal challenges to innovative companies from across a diverse range of sectors. Our success is built on our deep sector expertise, trusted independence and global network.

Find more Global Alliance Innovation Exchange challenges here