Why is transformation needed in this program area?

Ethiopia’s Growth and Transformation Plan aims to sustainably increase agricultural productivity to ensure food security, provide raw materials for agro-industries and expand export commodities to generate increased foreign revenue. However, crop production in Ethiopia is constrained by a wide range of biotic and abiotic stresses such as diseases, insect pests and weeds, which can cause widespread crop failures. The country has experienced recurrent outbreaks of pests, meaning the development of effective monitoring systems to alert farmers and agents before major occurrences is critical.

Currently, Ethiopia is not adequately safeguarded from new pests due to weak quarantine systems. A lack of effective institutions and limited capacity to implement plant quarantine services, as well as a lack of comprehensive lists of pests of quarantine importance are serious constraints affecting the crop production sector.

In addition, the control of pests using classical pesticides raises serious concerns about food and environmental safety, prompting the need for alternative pest management techniques such as integrated pest management approaches. The introduction of such pest management strategies also requires intensive efforts to raise awareness of these issues to smallholder farmers, as well as ensuring that the technical requirements of effective pest management are understood and applied by farmers and extension workers alike.

What are the objectives of this program area during GTP II?

The objective of the crop protection program is to incorporate the basic principles of pest management into the agriculture sector by promoting effective crop protection practices and documenting and disseminating scientific information to end users in order to reduce crop losses caused by pests.

During GTP II, this program will ensure the effective supply and adoption of quality and sustainable agrochemicals and other integrated crop management practices (ICMP) through strong early warning and response systems, increased domestic supplies of pesticides, enhanced crop health services, and the development of capacity for quarantine and pesticide quality assurance, registration, and regulation.

What are the focus areas of this program?

The focus areas of the program will be to strengthen pest management capacity at all levels, introduce mechanisms to predict and detect pests and diseases, as well as to introduce and enhance early warning systems for outbreaks that ensure appropriate responses. Strengthening quarantine systems for the management of trans-boundary pests will also be an important focus area of the program.