Dr. Agustin Molina speaks before the members of PBGEA in Davao, Philippines
In the Philippines, TR4 has been a major issue among Cavendish growers with over a thousand hectares of plantation infected by TR4 since 2010.
In the General Assembly of the Mindanao Banana Farmers and Exporters Association, Inc. (MBFEA, Inc.), an association of small to medium-sized Cavendish banana farmers and exporters, which was held on April 13, 2013,
Dr. Molina was invited to lecture on the current developments on Fusarium research. A number of MBFEA members fell victim to TR4 and their farms had to be rehabilitated and the disease, prevented from spreading further.
In the same light, another organization of growers, the Pilipino Banana Growers and Exporters Association (PBGEA), convened its members for a Fusarium wilt workshop on June 25, 2013 as part of their regular consultation dialogues.
In this activity, Dr. Molina talked about the current damage and potential threat of TR4 and the current R&D in disease mitigation in Asia-Pacific.
These groups of banana growers contribute 40% of the total export produce of the country. They are also the ones who have limited capacity and resources to do their own R&D, hence, much help is needed in this area.