Koppert is involved in the North-West Europe Interreg project, aiming to stimulate technology and knowledge exchange to jointly develop, test, demonstrate and implement innovative integrated pest management programs to control poultry red mite (Dermanyssus gallinae). The project is called MiteControl and runs until August 2023.
MiteControl is a collaboration of 7 partners: Experimental Poultry Centre in Geel (Belgium), Belgbroed (Belgium), Université Paul-Valéry Montpellier (France), Institut Technique de l’Aviculture in Paris (France), KU Leuven (Belgium), RSK ADAS Ltd in Bristol (UK) and Koppert Biological Systems. Koppert Biological Systems will provide natural enemies and expertise in this project.
The poultry red mite is a huge problem for the egg sector as an infestation rate of 90% on poultry farms causes approximately 231 million euro damage in the European egg industry annually. This number is even more dramatic worldwide. In addition, it is a significant problem for animal health and welfare.
The problem of poultry red mite is very complex as early stage infestations are difficult to discover and very few products are available on the market. Therefore, there is a clear need for an IPM approach as found in horticulture.
The aim of this project is to work together towards an Integrated Pest management Approach by developing an automated monitoring and decision support system, improving non-chemical treatments and raising awareness of farmers and implementing innovative and environmental friendly IPM approaches on farms. This includes the development of a communication strategy for the entire egg sector to raise awareness, which aims to have long-lasting effects. This should result in the majority of poultry farmers being aware of IPM strategies 10 years after the project ends.