The Latest News

June 6, 2019

Check out our latest work on longan featured in Entomology Today: New Guide Details Pest-management Practices for Longan

June 5, 2019

Happy World Environment Day!

May 22, 2019

Happy International Biodiversity Day! Check out the ways we are maintaining the world’s most valuable natural resources. 


April 8, 2019

IPM IL collaborates with another team to increase IPM sales in the developing world. 


April 1, 2019

The IPM IL is using cellphone tech to combat food security issues. Read more about it in the latest VT News article Virginia Tech taps text message services to assist farmers in developing countries.


March 20, 2019

NEW VIDEO: View a how-to video for using natural enemies against the devastating millet head miner. 


March 15, 2019

Women’s History Month marks a timely moment to acknowledge the value of conducting gender research in IPM. Learn about how it strengthens and reinforces the work the IPM IL does to increase global food security in the latest Entomology Today article, Gender Research in IPM: Women’s Empowerment as a Key to Unlocking Food Security. 


February 15, 2019

Icipe, one of the IPM IL’s major collaborators, will host a Training Workshop on Indigenous Biological Control Agents of the Fall Armyworm in Nairobi, Kenya in February. 


February 11, 2019

Happy International Day of Women and Girls in Science! Women continue to make important contributions to science, especially through agriculture. Help us celebrate their work in the latest Food Tank article, Celebrating Women in Science: Eight Women Breaking Ground in Agriculture.


February 1, 2019

IPM IL releases a success story on the Push-Pull technique currently helping farmers increase crop productivity in Africa. 


January 29, 2019

Interested in best management practices? Check out the Agrilinks article Knowledge Management: Online and Offline Tools for Global Success


December 9, 2018

The IPM Innovation Lab has long warned countries of impending pest invasions: A Dangerous Pest is on its way to Nepal


December 5, 2018

The IPM Innovation Lab gets a mention! Virginia Tech has been selected to write the Global Agricultural Productivity (GAP) Report. 


December 4, 2018

IPM IL Director Muni Muniappan traveled to Nepal for the November 30 stakeholders workshop on Preparedness and Rapid Response to Threats of Fall Armyworm in Nepal.


November 27, 2018

VT News has published IPM IL’s latest article on the millet headminer in Niger


March 22, 2018

The latest IPM IL Newsletter is out! See what we’ve been up to: Fall 2018 Newsletter


November 15, 2018 

A new video about IPM IL’s biocontrol approach to the devastating fall armyworm in Africa is out today.  

November 16, 2018

Icipe, one of the IPM IL’s major collaborators, will host a training workshop on Fall Armyworm in Kenya in January. 

October 24, 2018

Check out the IPM Innovation Lab’s latest piece in Agrilinks on the biocontrol of the pearl millet head miner: Value-Added Food and Processes: Biocontrol Opens New Prospects in the Sahel 

October 17, 201

CIRED, which houses the IPM Innovation Lab, welcomes a new Director of Communications!

October 16, 2018

Major congratulations to our very own visiting entomologist and collaborator, Tran Thi My Hanh, finalist for the Agrilinks Young Scholars Blog Contest! Look out for Hanh’s blog in the upcoming weeks on the Agrilinks website. 


October 1, 2018

CIRED has published a newsletter! Check out the many stories the IPM Innovation Lab has been featured in.

September 27, 2018

September 27-29, IPM IL Director Muni Muniappan traveled to Bangaluru, India for the First International Conference on Biological Control. Check out the schedule of events and the impressive abstracts presented on Tuta absoluta and Parthenium from IPM IL collaborators! IPM IL represented about 50 participants from five continents. 

September 27, 2018

Fighting Nature with Nature: Scientists Mobilize Biological Control Against Devastating Fall Armyworm

Learn about why biological control is an efficient mode for controlling the Fall Armyworm. 

September 14, 2018

Virginia Tech researchers make small discovery that could keep millions from going hungry

IPM IL makes the top story in VT News for Fall Armyworm work!

September 1, 2018

IPM IL travels to India for the First International Conference on Biological Control

September 27-29, IPM IL Director Muni Muniappan and others will be travelling to Bangaluru, India for the First International Conference on Biological Control. Check out the schedule of events and the impressive abstracts to be presented on Tuta absoluta and Parthenium from IPM IL collaborators!

August 23, 2018

Virginia Tech Scientist to be Keynote Speaker at International Biological Control of Weeds Conference 

August 26, Muni Muniappan will speak about the constraints and opportunities for biological control in developing countries at the Symposium on the Biological Control of Weeds in Switzerland. 

August 1, 2018

The IPM Innovation Lab is currently working on a project that will map invasive species and climate change within the CHAL region of Nepal.

July 30, 2018

Virginia Tech’s Simple Fix for Vietnam Cuts Pesticide Use, Sends Bugs Packing

Check out the IPM Innovation Lab’s latest news release in VT News about successful fruit sleeving and bagging in Vietnam: Virginia Tech’s Simple Fix for Vietnam Cuts Pesticide Use, Sends Bugs Packing

July 15, 2018

IPM IL Travels to Boston 

From July 29 to August 3 in Boston, IPM IL will be participating in a symposium at the International Congress of Plant Pathology (ICPP) 2018: Plant Health in A Global Economy.

July 1, 2018

IPM IL Travels to Niger

In September of 2018, IPM IL Director Muni Muniappan and Communications Coordinator Sara Hendery will be travelling to Niger to help assess the pearl millet head miner and the Fall Armyworm. 

June 30, 2018

First International Conference on Biological Control

September 27-29, IPM IL Director Muni Muniappan will be travelling to Bangaluru, India for the First International Conference on Biological Control. Check out the impressive abstracts to be presented on Tuta absoluta and Parthenium from IPM IL collaborators!

June 3, 2018

IPM IL Brings in Major Audience for Seminar in Cambodia 

IPM IL Director Muni Muniappan, USAID representative John Bowman, and Entomologist Buyung Hadi gave a seminar at the Royal University of Agriculture (RUA) in Cambodia to over 70 students! See what CE SAIN, IPM IL collaborators, posted about their visit. 

June 1, 2018

IPM IL Celebrates VT Graduate Upon Completion of Thesis on IPM, Gender, and Geography

Kaitlyn Spangler, recent graduate of the Geography Master’s program at Virginia Tech, talks to us about the experience of completing her research in Nepal and how the many elements of her travels tie together. 

May 10, 2018

Virginia Tech Collaborator with Ties to IPM IL Wins Major Award 

Laouali Amadou, a Ph.D. student studying entomology at the University of Niger, has won the Award for Scientific Excellence from the Board for International Food and Agricultural Development (BIFAD). The award is presented to a student working in a Feed the Future Innovation Lab who has demonstrated creativity in improving sustainable agriculture, food security, economic growth, and the communication of methods and technologies to communities. Moreover, the work the awardee completes must avoid any harm to the environment.

Amadou’s studies focus on the development of biological controls for the pearl millet head miner. Pearl millet is Niger’s most crucial crop, but the millet head miner threatens to damage nearly 85% of its yields. The loss and degradation of the crop could cause millions to go hungry; further, control of the pest using insecticides is unrealistic for subsistence farmers. The millet head miner has several natural enemies, including parasitoids that Amadou and his fellow researchers will release or are already releasing in Niger’s fields. In relation to Amadou’s work, George Norton, Virginia Tech Professor in the Department of Agricultural and Applied Economics, said that even if only 15% of farmers are affected by beneficial insects, the gains over twenty years would equal several hundreds of millions of dollars. The hope is that the mass-rearing and dissemination of the parasitoids will create a cottage industry that local people, like women’s groups and farmers, will be able to get involved in for additional income.

Amadou recently spent time at Virginia Tech, one of his many collaborators, receiving mentorship and guidance from IPM Innovation Lab Director Muni Muniappan to help him complete his thesis on the biological controls of the pearl millet head miner. Upon completion, he will become Niger’s eighth entomologist, which makes winning the prestigious Award for Scientific Excellence that much more valuable. Amadou accept his award on May 9 in Washington, D.C and he will soon return to Niger to continue his work.

March 28, 2018

Women Find Work with the Help of an Entrepreneur and a ‘Fighting Fungus'”

In fields and farms of the Bogura District of Bangladesh, entrepreneur Rebeka Sultana is giving an already prolific fungus even more transformative power. 

May 10, 2018

IPM IL Director’s Book Flies Off the Internet’s Shelves

In April 2018, IPM IL Director Muni Muniappan’s book Integrated Pest Management of Tropical Vegetable Crops was listed as one of the top 50% most downloaded eBooks with several thousand viewers. Download the book here!

April 27, 2018

IPM IL Hosts Yet Another Successful Webinar

On April 27, 2017 IPM IL hosted a successful webinar on Tuta absoluta, the tomato leafminer destroying tomato crops across the globe. There were three excellent presenters who each focused on their particular expertise: Nicolas Desneux Researcher, Institut Sophia Agrobiotech Inra, PACA, France presented on Biology and Ecology of Tuta absoluta, Abhijin Adiga, PhD Research Assistant Professor at the Network Dynamics and Simulation Science Laboratory (NDSSL), Biocomplexity Institute of Virginia Tech presented on Modeling the multi-pathway dispersal mechanisms of Tuta absoluta, and Thierry Brévault, PhD Insect Ecologist, CIRAD, France presented on Management of Tuta absoluta. View their presentations and conversations here

February 28, 2018

IPM IL Hosts Second Webinar 

IPM IL has hosted a second webinar and it was incredibly well received. Three speakers presented on their specific expertise: Nakkeeran Sevugapperumal, Ph.D., Department of Plant Pathology, Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, India, presented on the Popularization of Trichoderma Technology, Rabin Adhikari, Director, Agricare Nepal Pvt. Ltd., presented on the Successful Commercialization of Trichoderma, and Yousuf Mia, Ph.D., Coordinator, IPM Innovation Lab in Bangladesh, Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute (BARI), presented on Tricho-compost and plant disease management. See their presentations here

October 31, 2017

IPM Researcher, VT Student Wins Major Award

On October 14 2017, an entomology graduate student from Niger with ties to Muniappan and the Innovation Lab won the BIFAD graduate student Award for Scientific Excellence at an event held in conjunction with the World Food Prize ceremonies in Des Moines. 

October 16, 2017

IPM Practices for Healthy Crops and Healthy Families

Ms. Harriett Muthoni joined the Nthambo farmers group after farming for at least 10 years. In her previous farming experience, she grew a mix of maize and vegetables for market and to feed her family.

October 16,2017

Kenyan Farmer Takes Captures Market for Healthy Vegetable Seedlings

After graduation from Jomo Kenyatta University, Eston Mbuba got a job in Kenya’s crowded capital of Nairobi. He soon found his housing, food, transportation, and other living expenses too high, and his income too, with little hope this would change.

August 7, 2017 

Berks Woman Back After 2-Month Study in Nepal 

IPM Innovation Lab graduate student Kaitlyn Spangler talks to her hometown news station about her gender research in Nepal, what she’s learned, and what she hopes to achieve (video).  

August 7, 2017

IPM Innovation Lab scientists rally international coalition to stop a pestilent ‘army’

The fall armyworm – devastating to corn in Ethiopia, Tanzania, Kenya, and elsewhere – is subject of an emergency workshop July 14 through 16 in Addis Ababa, Ethiopia, to slow the pest’s advance in Africa and prevent its penetration into Southern Europe.

June 9, 2017

IPM IL Contributes to Books on Rice

The IPM Innovation Lab’s Asia Program Manager, E.A. “Short” Heinrichs, contributed chapters to two books on rice cultivation. The volumes Achieving sustainable cultivation of rice Vols. 1 & 2 draws on an international range of expertise to focus on ways of improving the cultivation of rice at each step in the value chain, from breeding to post-harvest storage. 

The volumes, published by Burleigh Dodds are available here.

June 1, 2017

Virginia Tech helps Nepal mobilize against devastating pest (video)

Climate change increases the risk for invasive species as more hospitable weather allows movement into new areas. With no natural enemies to stop it, the tomato leafminer Tuta absoluta can wipe out a country’s tomato harvest.

The pest, if left unchecked in Nepal, could be devastating for farmers and consumers in a country where 70 percent of the population works in agriculture. 

To help the country take steps that will help spare vital food crops, the Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab outlined strategies during a symposium it organized on the tomato pest at an international climate change conference in Kathmandu.

As corn pest ravages crops in Africa, Virginia Tech program leads the charge

June 1, 2017

An invader destroying maize in Africa is hitting countries where drought and political instability have already caused hunger. Virginia Tech’s Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Integrated Pest Management has mobilized to coordinate an attack on the fall armyworm. 

Workshop and a Bagamoyo Farmer Make Seedling Health the Foundation of IPM

March 15, 2017

On a normal day, Joseph Mbuji’s business is managing the production, harvest, and delivery components of his diversified Bagamoyo vegetable farm. But recently, he found himself delivering a lecture about his farm to an international audience. 

IPM Innovation Lab co-hosts international climate change conference in Nepal

March 1, 2017 

To work on important issues in the face of climate change, the IPM Innovation Lab’s project on biodiversity and climate change assessment in Nepal organized the three-day International Conference on Biodiversity, Climate Change Assessment, and Impacts on Livelihood in Nepal.

February 24, 2017

Muni’s Musings Winter 2017

Thank you for taking the time to read our winter installment of the Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab newsletter. The last few months have included project planning meetings, invasive pest workshops, and even an international conference on climate change and biodiversity in Nepal. 

February 13, 2017

IPM Innovation Lab compiles book on 20 years of IPM in tropical countries

Skeptics of integrated pest management have always existed, especially doubters of its effectiveness in the developing world where food insecurity is a daily struggle. But a new book edited by Virginia Tech entomologist Rangaswamy “Muni” Muniappan shows the vital role of environmentally friendly integrated pest management practices in feeding the world’s growing population.

February 13, 2017

Innovation Lab collaboration works to control insects that attack Niger’s most important food crop

Two major pests attack pearl millet, the most important food crop in Niger in West Africa, and some scientists and policymakers believed that only one of them could be controlled. But Virginia Tech entomologist and IPM Innovation Lab Director Muniappan had a hunch.

Two men in a field in Niger

November 7, 2016

Muni’s Musings

Welcome to our fall edition of the Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab newsletter. We’ve been very busy and productive over the last few months and I’m excited to share with you some of what we’ve done

November 7, 2016

EPIC: A new partnership for rice pest management in Cambodia

Article by one of our project leaders, the International Rice Research Institute, about the work they are doing on our Rice IPM in Cambodia project.

November 2, 2016

IPM Innovation Lab researchers spoke at the International Congress of Entomology

Scientists and researchers gathered at the International Congress of Entomology in Orlando, Florida last month, and the IPM Innovation Lab was there. During the Congress, we led two symposia, including one symposium  on the global spread of the South American tomato leafminer, Tuta absoluta, resulting in the group recommending a number of measures.

October 10, 2016

Arab and Near East Plant Protection Newsletter

Check out the latest issue of the Arab and Near East Plant Protection Newsletter, ANEPPNEL 67, April 2016, published jointly by the Arab Society for Plant Protection and the Near East and North Africa Regional Office of the FAO.

October 7, 2016

Biological control agents are farmers’ friends

The International Rice Research Institute (IRRI), under the aegis of their Rice IPM project with IPM IL, collaborated with GIZ to conduct a biocontrol forum in Phnom Penh with roughly 140 participants.

October 7, 2016

IPM IL finds sterile soil and rice-damaging nematode in Cambodia

When Jon Eisenback, professor of plant nematology at Virginia Tech’s College of Agriculture and Life Sciences, conducted nematode surveys on vegetables and rice in Cambodia this past August, one of the most surprising things he encountered in the vegetable fields was, in a word, nothing.

September 23, 2016

Invasive weed Parthenium damaged by beetle thanks to IPM IL project

Parthenium hysterophorus L. is a native plant of tropical and sub-tropical South and North America that adversely affects food security, biodiversity, and the health of both humans and livestock in East Africa. 

September 22, 2016

Parthenium presentation in Algiers

Wondi Mersie, PI for the IPM Innovation Lab’s Biological control of the invasive weed Parthenium hysterophorus in East Africa project, was invited by Dr. Shoki Al-Dobai, Crop Protection Officer for FAO to speak about the spread, economic, social and environmental importance and management practices of the Parthenium at the Annual Regional Workshop of the International Plant Protection Convention (IPPC) for the Near East and North Africa region held in Algiers, Algeria from September 5 to 8. 

September 23, 2016

Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab Conducts Workshop on Diagnosis and Management of Plant Virus Diseases in Cambodia

The IPM Innovation Lab conducted a three-day workshop on “Diagnosis and Management of Plant Virus Diseases” at the Plant Pathology Division of the Royal University of Agriculture (RUA) in Phnom Penh, Cambodia from August 10-12, 2016.

September 19, 2016

The Coming Tomatopocalypse: Could a Tiny Moth Make Ketchup Scarce?

Our work fighting the spread of Tuta absoluta, the South American tomato leafminer was covered in the daily food and agriculture news publication, Civil Eats.

September 7, 2016

You Say Tomato, These Moths Say Dinner

Director Muni Muniappan is featured in this New York Times article about Tuta absoluta and its potential to invade the United States.

August 11, 2016

IPM Innovation Lab hosts meeting at Virginia Tech

On July 7th and 8th, 2016, the IPM Innovation Lab hosted a joint meeting of our project PIs and our Technical Advisory Committee.

August 10, 2016

IPM IL’s workshop in Cambodia invokes power of the ‘fighting fungus’ (with video)

The so-called fighting fungus, Trichoderma, is great at eating “bad” fungi as well as promoting plant growth. For developing countries where crop pests and diseases are a major problem, Trichoderma is a vital tool.

July 5, 2016 

A Look Ahead

Here are some of the exciting events and meetings coming up!

July 5, 2016

What People Are Talking About

Here are some of the recent trending headlines that IPMers and Feed the Future fans are talking about!

July 5, 2016

Highlights and Happenings

There was a Trichoderma workshop in Cambodia from June 13-17, 2016 and the IPM Innovation Lab hosted the workshop “Production and use of bio-control agent Trichoderma and plant growth promoting Rhizobacteria” at the Royal University of Agriculture in Phnom Penh, Cambodia.

June 30, 2016

Student Q&A: Laouali Amadou

Niger Ph.D. student Laouali Amadou is on track to become the eighth entomologist in his home country. 

June 30, 2016

PI Profile: Wondi Mersie

Wondi Mersie has been working with the IPM Innovation Lab, formerly the IPM Collaborative Research Support Program, since 2005.

June 30, 2016

Muni’s Musings

Hello readers, Welcome to the third edition of our Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab newsletter.

June 10, 2016

Africa’s Big Tomato Pickle

Director Muni Muniappan was interviewed for an article on “Africa’s Big Tomato Pickle: Miner Grubs are Wiping Them Out.” 

June 2, 2016

“There is no silver bullet” for tomatoes’ pest problem

Muni Muniappan, an entomologist and expert in pest management at Virginia Tech, says the near total destruction of Nigeria’s tomato crop caused by Tuta absoluta, also known as the South American tomato leaf miner, is the latest precursor to the devastating pest’s likely arrival in the United States.

May 4, 2016

Planning Meetings Held for East Africa Projects

From March 28 to April 6, 2016, members from two IPM Innovation Lab teams traveled to Ethiopia, Kenya, and Tanzania for the first planning meetings of the “Vegetable IPM for East Africa” and “Grains IPM for East Africa” projects.

May 3, 2016

Devastating wheat fungus appears in Asia for first time

Scientists race to determine origin of Bangladesh outbreak, which they warn could spread farther afield.  

April 7, 2016

Invasive Modeling Project Featured on VTNews Site

Check out Virginia Tech’s piece on our Invasive Species Modeling for South American Tomato Leafminer and Groundnut Leafminer project, in conjunction with Virginia Tech’s Biocomplexity Institute.

March 29, 2016

IPM Team Attends Emerging Plant Disease and Global Food Security Symposium

Last week, IPM IL Director Muni Muniappan and Associate Director Amer Fayad, along with IPM project PI Abhijin Adiga, attended the Emerging Plant Disease and Global Food Security Symposium at North Carolina State University in Raleigh, NC, March 23-24, 2016. 

March 23, 2016

IPM IL Conducts Virus Training in Nepal

The IPM Innovation Lab (IPM IL) conducted a three day “Training on Diagnosis of Plant Virus Diseases in Vegetable Crops” at the Plant Pathology Division of the Nepal Agricultural Research Council (NARC) in Kathmandu, Nepal March 1-3, 2016.

Young banana trees in soil

March 21, 2016

A Look Ahead

Mark your calendars, there’s a lot to look forward to!

March 21, 2016

What People are Talking About

Here are some of the recent trending headlines that IPMers and Feed the Future fans are talking about.

March 21, 2016

Recent Highlights and Happenings

The team went to Ethiopia in December to begin planning on the current phase of the Parthenium project and to lead a workshop, where scientists discussed the advantages and challenges of biocontrol, the importance of gender  when it comes to project planning, and the impact of Parthenium in Kenya and Tanzania.

March 21, 2016

Project Updates

We have received official USAID approval for all eight of our projects, and the planning has begun.

Woman with children in Indonesia

March 21, 2016

Student Q&A

Aishwarya Bhattacharjee is a Ph.D. student in biology who was born in India and raised in Thailand and Bangladesh.

March 21, 2016

PI Profile: George Norton

George Norton has been with the IPM Innovation Lab, formerly the IPM Collaborative Research Support Program, since the very beginning in 1993.

March 21, 2016

Muni’s Musings

Hello readers, Welcome to the second edition of our Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab newsletter!

January 18, 2016

IPM Awarded 100,000 Birr from Haramaya University for Parthenium Research

On the final day of a weed workshop in Ethiopia in December, 2015, the Innovation Lab’s Parthenium project was awarded 100,000 Birr by Haramaya University.

January 15, 2016

IPM Parthenium Project in IOBC Newsletter

Check us out in the December 2015 newsletter of the International Organization for Biological Control!

January 15, 2016

IPM in Outbursts

This month’s Outbursts, the monthly publication of Outreach and International Affairs, has spotlighted our program and recent trip to Ethiopia.

A Look Ahead

October 9, 2015

A Look Ahead

IPMers and Feed the Future fans are abuzz over recent trending headlines.

Recent Highlights

October 9, 2015

Recent Highlights

Over the past year, Dr. Muniappan’s mission to control the threat of the invasive species, Tuta absoluta has garnered attention in both national and local media.

Project Updates

October 9, 2015

Project Updates

Phase V Projects are underway!

Student Q&A

October 9, 2015

Student Q&A

Vanessa Carrion is an international student from Ecuador who plans to wrap up her Ph.D. in Economics by the end of the fall semester.

Nir Krakauer

October 9, 2015

PI Profile: Nir Krakauer

Introducing Nir Krakauer, the new Principal Investigator for a sub award of the Virginia Tech-led Feed the Future Innovation Lab for Integrated Pest Management.

Muni's Musings

October 9, 2015

Muni’s Musings

Greetings, readers, Welcome to the very first edition of our Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab newsletter!

Establishment of Tuta absoluta

September 18, 2015

Spread of Tuta absoluta, the South American tomato leafminer

A tiny moth no bigger than an eyelash has become a serious threat to the world’s tomato crop since it left its place of origin – South America – in 2006.

illustration of South American tomato leafminer

September 11, 2015

Director forms working group on invasive species

At the August meeting of the International Plant Protection Congress in Berlin, IPM IL director Muni Muniappan called for the formation of a working group on the invasive species Tuta absoluta – the South American tomato leafminer.

Recent Highlights

August 26, 2015

IPM IL wins plant protection award in Berlin

The opening ceremony of the International Plant Protection Congress prompted a proud moment for the Virginia Tech-led Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab.

farmer plows field with oxen

August 17, 2015

Agriculture in Nepal: How do we inspire a new generation to go into farming?

Sulav Paudel, an entomologist with a partner organization based in Kathmandu, presents his ideas on how to encourage young Nepalese to go into agriculture.


August 17, 2015

Innovation Lab’s work cuts crop losses

Halting climate change-induced crop losses could relieve pressure on farmers who are trying to satisfy burgeoning populations, according to IPM Innovation Lab researchers.

August 5, 2015

IPM research featured in Tanzanian newspaper

In July, 2015, the Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab held a two-day workshop to help raise awareness of the danger of the invasive pest Tuta absoluta, or tomato leafminer.


June 9, 2015

IPM IL assists in post-earthquake recovery in Nepal

In Nepal, the Virginia Tech-led IPM Innovation Lab has switched gears from development work to disaster relief after the recent earthquakes.

June 8, 2015

USAID Nepal shares item about IPM IL on Facebook, reaches 76,000 people

USAID-Nepal shared an item about our work in Nepal that, as of June 6, had reached 76,672 people.

May 18, 2015

On the ground in Nepal: A first-person account of the earthquake

As many of you may have heard, a devastating earthquake struck Nepal last month, killing more than 8,000 people. Not three weeks later, a magnitude 7.3 earthquake again rocked the mountainous country.

April 29, 2015

Our hearts are in Nepal

When I checked the news on my iPad this past Saturday morning, I was dismayed to learn of a huge earthquake in Nepal.

April 15, 2015

IPM IL launches preemptive strike against destructive insect in Nepal

For the past eight years, scientists have been chasing a tiny invasive moth as it has ravaged its way through many European, North African, and Mediterranean countries. But a Virginia Tech-led program has finally caught up with it.

April 8, 2015

Nepal workshop in full swing

The IPM Innovation Lab (IPM IL) organized a six-day workshop on “Disease Diagnosis and Basic Plant Pathological Techniques for Early Career Scientists” in collaboration with the Nepal Agricultural Research Council (NARC) and iDE Nepal at the regional NARC station in Khajura, Banke, during  April 6-12, 2015.

George Norton receives award

April 2, 2015

Virginia Tech agricultural economist wins lifetime achievement award

Measuring the economic impacts of IPM. Expanding the international scope of IPM. Identifying the traits of successful IPM programs. These contributions were cited in the awarding of the International IPM Lifetime Achievement Award to Virginia Tech agricultural economist George Norton.

Tuta in pheromone trap

April 1, 2015

Tomato leafminer discovered in India

Scientists in west central India recently discovered the invasive tomato leafminer, Tuta absoluta, in tomato fields. The devastating insect, a tiny moth no bigger than an eyelash, is now poised to strike tomato fields across India.

February 6, 2015

IPM Spreads to the Kingdom of Bhutan

When I say Bhutan, what do you think of? Snow leopards? A mountainous country in the eastern Himalayas? The only country with a Gross National Happiness indicator? It may now also become known for its beautiful vegetables.

February 4, 2015

IPM work in Africa featured on Scientific American blog

As the IPM Innovation Lab enters its fifth phase, it’s setting its sights on Tuta absoluta, a devastating, invasive tomato leafminer native to South America. Our work with farmers to combat this tiny moth was recently featured in the prestigious Scientific American.

January 13, 2015

Partnering with the private sector in Nepal

Rabin Adhikari has big ideas for Nepal. “I see a Nepal with thriving local businesses that help smallholder farmers produce better crops organically,” he said.

December 23, 2014

University awarded $18 million to implement integrated pest management program in developing countries

Virginia Tech has won a new $18 million grant for a program working to raise the standard of living of people around the world through environmentally sound agricultural practices.

December 11, 2014

IPM IL – Nepal issues first annual newsletter

The Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab (IPM IL) is a global USAID program led by Virginia Tech with a consortium of Universities including Penn State and Ohio State.

October 16, 2014

IPM director wins award for work in tropical agriculture

Rangaswamy “Muni” Muniappan works to save the papaya industry in southern India. He connects researchers in developing countries. He has discovered an invasive species in Senegal and Nepal.


October 10, 2014

Morning pears with a booklouse

Advancing technology has indisputably sharpened the tools of scientific inquiry.

September 12, 2014

The Death’s Head Moth and other new additions to Muni’s growing insect collection

IPM Director IPM Innovation Lab has an ever-growing insect collection.  He travels all over the world for workshops and conferences, and he takes his net with him everywhere he goes.

September 4, 2014

Burying Treasure: Virginia Tech programs collaborate to improve potato production in Ecuador

The potato is often described as a “humble” root — grubby and plebeian. But the potato literally feeds the hungry — it is the fifth most important crop worldwide.

August 12, 2014

International Agriculture Development — Now in Color!

Imagine you’re a farmer growing fruit on steep mountainous slopes. It’s hard work; you wake before dawn and spend most of the day on terraces and hillsides, tending to your crop. But things are getting harder.

August 8, 2014

Can you draw me a map?

“A map does not just chart, it unlocks and formulates meaning.” 

July 24, 2014

Weed-eating Beetle to the Rescue

“We have to reduce pesticide use, and there is a way! It’s called biocontrol.” -Arne Witt

July 14, 2014

Workshop on Parthenium hysterophorus

The IPM Innovation Lab team co-hosted a workshop in Ethiopia on the biological control and management of the viciously invasive weed, Parthenium hysterophorus, which has much of Ethiopian farmland in a stranglehold.

July 9, 2014

To Africa!

Ever since I was a little girl, I wanted to travel. As a lover of Jane Austen, Middle Earth and Narnia, Europe of course, was first in my mind.

July 1, 2014

The Tiny Fungi Playing a Giant Role

Scientists, researchers, and agricultural experts from several countries (including India, Cambodia, Indonesia, Bangladesh, and Honduras) recently gathered in the rural town of Bharatpur, Nepal, to learn more about an inexpensive, environmentally friendly bio-agent called Trichoderma.

June 25, 2014

Taking Aim at a Bitter Weed

Parthenium, a flowering weed, is commonplace in the Americas. It appears innocent with simple, white blossoms and lacy foliage.  But it has become a serious agricultural and rangeland weed in parts of Australia, Asia, Africa and the Pacific Islands.

June 13, 2014

Naranjilla: Complicated and Delicious

The moment that I was waiting for had finally come.

June 10, 2014

Trichoderma Workshop in Nepal

A workshop on the production and use of the biocontrol agent Trichoderma is underway in Nepal.

June 3, 2014

Name that Moth: Spring Love at OIRED

On the way out of the office for lunch, my eye was caught by a brownish clump hanging from the front-office window of the Office of International Research and Education and Development. 

May 30, 2014

Test Your Insect Knowledge

Each year, herbivorous insects are said to be responsible for destroying one fifth of the world’s total crop production (according to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations.

May 30, 2014

A Spider De-vilified

Last week, one of my co-workers was exiting the lady’s room when she came to a sudden stop. There on the floor in front of her was a massively massive spider.

May 6, 2014

University-led workshop in Senegal combats invasive species in the tropics

A workshop in Senegal in mid-May will gather scientists and extension workers to address the topic of invasive species in the tropics. Virginia Tech’s international agricultural research program is hosting the workshop May 12-15 in the capital city of Dakar.

May 1, 2014

IPM Innovation Lab Director Muniappan featured in Outbursts Magazine

Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab Director Rangaswamy ‘Muni’ Muniappan was profiled in May’s edition of Outbursts, a monthly publication of Outreach and International Affairs.

Women in plant seeds in coconut dust.

April 10, 2014

Seeding success in India turns coconut dust into gold

Coconut dust may not be fairy dust, but in southern India, the substance is creating healthy crops.

Februrary 6, 2014

Video: Scientists work to stop moth from destroying world’s tomato crop

In countries around the world, a tiny insect is wreaking havoc on farms and threatening to push up the price of tomatoes.

January 22, 2014

Halting crop destruction in India saves up to $309 million

Virginia Tech researchers who first discovered a devastating pest in India and devised a natural way to combat it have now put an economic value on their counterattack: up to $309 million the first year and more than $1 billion over 5 years. 

November 20, 2013

University-led workshop in Ethiopia combats tomato leafminer

A workshop in Ethiopia later this month will gather scientists and others to fight an invasive pest that threatens tomato crops across the world.

Women with shallots in India.

August 5, 2013

Higher onion yields in India thanks to IPM

A holistic suite of environmentally-friendly agricultural techniques produce higher, healthier yields of onions in India, while still successfully combating pests and diseases, according to new research published in the Journal of Integrated Pest Management.

April 5, 2013

University awarded $1.59 million to pursue agricultural research in developing countries

Virginia Tech has won a total of $1.59 million for three federal contracts to continue agricultural research in Bangladesh, Indonesia, and Nepal. The awards represent a vote of confidence in development work that has been ongoing since 1993.

June 28, 2013

Godfrey Asea, former IPM IL graduate student, internationally recognized for maize program in Uganda

A former IPM IL graduate student, Godfrey Asea, is working to improve Uganda’s maize production systems and earning international recognition in the process.


April 15, 2012

IPM IL Technical Committee appoints two new members

The IPM IL management entity has appointed two new members to its technical committee: S. Mohankumar and Ramasamy Srinivasan. Their terms began this month (May 2012) and will end in September 2014.

October 15, 2011

Summer gender workshop in Ghana to reach 9,000 farmers

The West African Regional Program held a workshop in Tuobodom, Brong Ahafo Region, Ghana, on gender roles and pesticide use in tomato farming, July 19–22, 2011.

June 4, 2011

Tajik ambassador to the U.S. visits Michigan State, Central Asia IPM IL team

Tajikistan’s ambassador to the United States visited the Michigan State University campus as a guest of the Central Asia IPM IL project in late May 2011.

May 15, 2011

Workshop held on tomato IPM in the San José de Ocoa region of the Dominican Republic

A workshop on identification and management of pests and diseases was held on Wednesday April 30, 2011, in the province of San José de Ocoa, Dominican Republic.

April 1, 2010

IPM scientists combat pest of highly prized cacao in Ecuador

Rachel Melnick learned one thing about spending long days in Ecuadoran cacao orchards: do not work past 4:00 pm.


January 1, 2010

International Association for the Plant Protection Sciences (IAPPS) Blog Launched

IAPPS has announced that a new IAPPS Blog has been launched. The blog is designed to provide a service to the global IAPPS Membership.

women do mapping exercise in Uganda

December 1, 2009

USAID Mali mission awards $2.5 million to the IPM IL

The Integrated Pest Management Innovation Lab has won a $2.5 million associate award to manage a program that will promote agriculture-led growth, increase rural incomes and reduce hunger in Mali.