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BANANA PEST and disease - Shanmugam IAS academy in coimbatore
BANANA PEST and disease


What’s in news?

A new artificial intelligence system (AI) which can look at photographs and tell what disease the plant has and also give recommendations and treatment options to the farmers. 

Key data’s:

  • Researchers have developed a new artificial intelligence system (AI) by which identifying diseases and pests on banana crops will now be just a click away. 
  • An app was developed by researchers from Africa’s Bioversity International to identify and combat outbreaks of pests and diseases. 
  • Designed to be used with a smartphone, both on and offline, it’s claimed to operate with an average success rate of 90 percent.
  • The study was published in the journal “Plant Methods”.
  • The tool is now incorporated into an App called Tumaini, meaning hope in Swahili, and being tested.
  • The App can detect symptoms on any part of the crop, and is even trained to read images of lower quality.
  • The app is now being tested across many countries and when the confidence of 100% is reached it will be available for free download.
  • The National Research Centre for Banana (NRCB) and the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) have shown interested in the App and the App was being tested in Tamil, and it will soon be available in Hindi and Malayalam. 
  • Yellow leaf spot and Fusarium wilt are the major fungal diseases in India and farmers spend a lot of money on fungicides.
  • Apart from the fungal disease, the viral disease such as Banana Bunchy top virus is a big problem in hilly areas of Tamil Nadu, Kerala and Northeast region. 

Working process:

  • When users take the photo, it gets uploaded to a global system for large-scale monitoring.
  • It is automatically GPS-tagged so we know what and where the problem is. 
  • The App can tell the farmers in advance bringing down the treatment costs.

In future:

  • Planning to add more diseases based on regions and available local languages.
  • Planning to incorporate high-resolution satellite monitoring to check the health of large fields.


Links to note:

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