VEGETABLE PRODUTION IN WEST AFRICA…In West Africa, market gardening is considered one of the sectors in agriculture that consumes lots of pesticides.
In order to study (i) the principal protection practices of vegetables and (ii) the inherent environmental risks to pesticide use practices, a survey was carried in some west African countries:
Guinea Bissau, Burkina faso, Senegal and Togo from 2014 to 2015. A random selection of 161 farmers were interviewed on their farms, which are distributed over the most important vegetable production sites located in dry Savanna, forests and littoral zones of Togo. The results showed that 88% of farmers interviewed responded that, insects are the most important vegetable pests in most of the west African countries.
Crop protection practices are primarily based on excessive use of synthetic pesticides which in most cases include organophosphates (27.3%) and pyrethroids (18.2%), known to be dangerous to human health and environment.
Despite the excessive use of pesticides, farmers revealed that insect pests continue to cause serious damages, which is an indication that they have developed a resistance to pesticides. Moreover, about 80 to 90% of farmers did not have adequate materials for handling and application of pesticides and are thus exposed to pesticide poisoning.