Wines & Vines Home
   
 
Welcome Guest
LOGIN |  CREATE ACCOUNT
 
ADVERTISEMENT
 
 
 
09.27.2013  
 

Fruit Pest Getting Established in California

Brown marmorated stink bug, a threat to wine grapes and other crops, infests Sacramento

 
by Andrew Adams
 
 
brown marmorated stink bug
 
A resident near the site of the recently discovered Sacramento infestation site shot this photo of brown marmorated stink bugs aggregating on a tree. (Photo: Baldo Villegas)

Sacramento, Calif.—Although the non-native brown marmorated stink bug, or BMSB, pest has been in California for a few years, experts are concerned by the recent discovery of a sizable population in the center of the state’s capital city.

BMSB has established itself in parts of Oregon and become a nuisance for orchard farmers and vineyard owners in Virginia, Pennsylvania and other eastern states. The bug has been found in parts of Los Angeles County and other areas of California but in small numbers and isolated areas.

‘A major infestation’
The most recent discovery, however, of a well-established population that had been present for some time in the area, could mean the pest is becoming more entrenched in California. “Oh my gosh, it’s an infestation,” said Chuck Ingels, the University of California Cooperative Extension advisor for Sacramento County. “You can walk Midtown and find them everywhere. It’s a major infestation.”

Ingels said the population was only discovered when a resident in the area mentioned the bug to a UC master gardener who in turn happened to say something to a friend who worked for the California Department of Agriculture. “We don’t know how long it’s been there, but one of the residents there said they saw them in June of this year.”

Native to Asia, the pest first appeared in the United States in Pennsylvania in 2001. BMSB eat a variety of fruit including grapes, but they have the biggest impact on orchard crops that need a clean appearance to appeal to consumers.

The pest left its biggest mark in the East in 2010, causing a reported $37 million in damage to the eastern apple crop. At the time, grapegrowers were most concerned that bugs hidden in grape clusters would get crushed into juice and eventually impart their hallmark stink to finished wine.

Research by Dr. Joseph Fiola, the extension specialist for viticulture and small fruit at the University of Maryland, however, found that finished wine made with BMSB-tainted fruit did not exhibit any malodorous qualities.

That research allayed fears from grapegrowers, but Dr. Doug Pfeiffer, an entomologist with Virginia Polytechnic Institute & State University, said the pest has been an issue for a few growers this year.

Grape damage still a concern
Pfeiffer said following the major outbreak of 2010 populations of BMSB declined in 2011 and 2012. They rebounded this year, although not to the level of 2010. The pest wasn’t an issue for most vineyards, but in some places the population was so large that crop damage was a concern.

After feeding on ripening grapes, BMSB can leave small areas of necrosis, or dead tissue on berries. This damage is of little concern if there’s no sensory impact on the finished wine, but too much damage could potentially ruin a cluster.

Pfeiffer said he and a graduate student are currently working to determine a population threshold to help growers decided when to spray for BMSB. Spraying for BMSB, however, presents its own issues.

Spraying a challenge for IPM
Chris Bergh, a professor of tree fruit and grape entomology with the Virginia Tech extension, said treating for BMSB has required orchardists to change management practices significantly using broad-spectrum insecticides such as synthetic pyrethoids that also disrupt beneficial insects, which are part of an integrated pest management program.

The United States Department of Agriculture is researching parasitoid Asian wasps that could serve as a natural control for BMSB, but the results of those tests are still a couple years off.

Ingels said there’s no way of knowing where BMSB could be discovered next in California, or when the pest could become a serious threat to California agriculture.

The best indication of what may happen in California may be found in Oregon, where researchers and growers are anxiously waiting to see how much of a problem the pest poses. ( See “Oregon Winegrowers Raise Stink About Bug.”)

The California Department of Agriculture currently is laying out traps to gain a better understanding of the state’s population of BMSB, and Ingels suggested growers in the Sacramento County area could do the same. He also referred them to the county extension’s website, where they could find more information about the pest and also report if they’ve found them on their property.

 

SHARE »
Close
 
Currently no comments posted for this article.
 
CURRENT NEWS INDEX »


 
Wines & Vines Home
 
866.453.9701 | 415.453.9700 | Fax: 415.453.2517
65 Mitchell Blvd., Ste. A San Rafael, CA 94903
info@winesandvines.com
Wine Industry Metrics
 
Off-Premise Sales » Month   12 Months  
August 2014 $558 million
5%
$7,613 million
6%
August 2013 $531 million $7,167 million
     
Direct-to-Consumer Shipments » Month   12 Months  
August 2014 $78 million
17%
$1,686 million
10%
August 2013 $67 million $1,530 million
     
Winery Job Index » Month   12 Months  
August 2014 218
12%
224
19%
August 2013 194 189
     
 
MORE » Released on 09.15.2014
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Practical Winery & Vineyard Library
 
Search the PWV archive »
 
 

Direct To Consumer
Wine Shipping Report
2014
 
Download full report »
 
 

CALENDAR
  • September 18-21
     
    Euphoria
     
  • September 22-23
     
    Wine Industry Financial Symposium
     
  • September 23-24
     
    Experimental Design and Chemometrics for Chemists
     
  • September 27
     
    Red Mountain AVA Block Party
     
  • MORE »
 

READER COMMENTS
 
Article: New York OKs Out-of-State Grapes »
 
If the resultant wine, using out of state juice,bears the "American" on the label, I...
Reader: Guest
 
Article: Financial Impact of Napa Quake Rising »
 
I still think the numbers are low and don't include legal fees. Section 165 was...
Reader: Guest
 
Article: Tasting the Effects of Wine Closures »
 
In addition to oxidation of somee of the SO2, post-bottling chemical changes are a continuation...
Reader: Guest
 
Article: Tasting the Effects of Wine Closures »
 
I agree with the 14:46 post. I have switched to screwcap on most of my...
Reader: Chris Baker
 
Article: Tasting the Effects of Wine Closures »
 
What I have found in the past between the type of closures is this. A)...
Reader: Guest
 
 


Directory/Buyer's Guide — Your Wine Industry Marketplace
 
 
WINERY SEARCH
 
 
Advanced Search »
SUPPLIER SEARCH
   by Product
 by Company Name or Brand
 
Browse by Category »
2014 Directory/Buyer's Guide
The Wines & Vines Directory and Buyer's Guide
 
 
EXPANDED ONLINE SEARCH INCLUDED WITH PURCHASE
 
ORDER NOW »
 
LEARN MORE »
 
 
Wines & Vines Magazine
 
 
LEARN MORE »
 
SUBSCRIBE »
 
Digital Edition Now Available!
Wines & Vines Digital Edition Now Available
 
LEARN MORE »
 
ORDER NOW »
 
 
The Wines & Vines Online Marketing System
 
The Industry Standard winery marketing application
 
FREE LIVE DEMO »
 
VIEW VIDEO »
 
 
 
 
Latest Job Listings
 G/L Accountant
 Napa, CA
Finance
 Cellar Worker
 Santa Rosa, CA
Winemaking and Production
 Wine Steward/Merchandi...
 San Jose, CA
Sales and Marketing
 Pt - Tasting Room Asso...
 Newberg, OR
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 Sales Representatives
 North And South, CA
Sales and Marketing
 Tasting Room Host
 Carmel Valley, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 Retail Sales & Hospita...
 Healdsburg, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 Administrative Assista...
 Benicia, CA
General Administration and
 Brand Ambassador
 Buellton, CA
Sales and Marketing
 Hospitality Representa...
 Napa, CA
DTC, Tasting Room and Retai
 
More Job Listings >>
Follow Us On:
 
 





Home  |  About Us  |  Editors  |  Subscribe  |  Print Edition  |  Digital Edition

Advertise  |  Site Map  |  Contact Us  |  Privacy Policy
 
 
Copyright © 2001-2014 by Wine Communications Group, Inc. All Rights Reserved.
No material may be reproduced without written permission of the Publisher.
Wines&Vines does not assume any responsibility for any unsolicited manuscripts or materials.