Natural way of fighting cacao disease sought
Government and private agencies recently gathered for a hands-on seminar on how to better detect and control the Vascular Streak Dieback (VSD) cacao disease through biological methods.
VSD has been found in most cocoa-growing areas in South and Southeast Asia, and Papua New Guinea. It has been a major problem in the large commercial plantations in West Malaysia and Sabah.
It is widespread in Indonesia, including in the cocoa plantations in East and West Java. Cases of VSD are also reported from Southern Thailand, Burma, Vietnam, and the Southern Philippines.
A Cacao Pest Management Program is being crafted using biological instead of chemical approaches.