technical issues surrounding new and potential challenges to California agriculture with respect to PD. The committee was asked to monitor scientific advances in the areas of economically and environmentally important agricultural diseases and pests, including their vectors; respond to requests; identify emerging issues; provide independent analyses of scientific information and of state, federal, and international activities; and submit a rigorous and timely evaluation of scientific issues in response to identified areas of concern. The specific charge to the committee was as follows:
The area of proposed study for the committee will be the current outbreak of agricultural diseases caused by Xylella fastidiosa and the disease vector, the glassy-winged sharpshooter. The committee will review the state of California’s priorities for both short-term and long-term research and management efforts to control the glassy-winged sharpshooter, and identify a cure for Pierce’s disease. It is anticipated that the committee will help to identify research priorities and needs, and will assist the state in coordinating with national and international program efforts to address the disease.
Pierce’s disease has affected grape production in California for more than a century, but until the introduction of GWSS in the past decade, neither the pathogen nor the insect stimulated significant and consistent research support. Because wine grape growers add significant value to their crops by making and selling wine, the wine industry has considerably greater resources than other agriculture commodity sectors do. The industry has been able to respond rapidly to the problems of PD–GWSS and to allocate significant resources for addressing the threat. The result is expanded research on the grape–PD–GWSS system and on identifying opportunities to control or manage the disease and vector.
Over the past 3 years, nearly $20 million has been set aside to fund 125 completed and continuing research projects. Support is provided by the PD/GWSS Board, CDFA, the University of California Pierce’s Disease Research Grants Program, USDA’s Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service and its Agricultural Research Service, the American Vineyard Foundation, the California Competitive Grant Program for Research in Viticulture and Enology, the California Citrus Nursery Advisory Board, the Almond Board of California, and the California Department of Transportation.
The research program that has emerged from the exchange of information, data, and experiences among growers, county and state officials, and academic researchers reflects the various interests of the stakeholders in the