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RECOMMENDATIONS FOR ORGANIZATIONAL CHANGES

The concepts and technology of modern biology and related sciences will almost certainly be able to deliver sustainable methods for HLB mitigation not available and perhaps not even conceived at present. However, citrus production and quality must be maintained until new technologies can be put in place, or there will be no economic base to support implementing those technologies. Achieving an organized response to HLB will be a key to success in addressing the current, urgent needs of the citrus industry and developing the technology to sustain the industry in the future. Accordingly, recommendations for organizational changes are discussed first. However, the success of organizational changes is interdependent with informational initiatives and key research activities.

Recommendations O-1, In-1, In-2 and NI-1 have a high priority because of their potential for sustaining production until the to-be-developed approaches can be implemented. The committee recommends the creation of “Citrus Health Management Areas” (Recommendation O-1) to facilitate and coordinate control of ACP and the removal of affected trees, both in commercial orchards (Recommendation In-1) and in residential areas (Recommendation In-2). Recommendation NI-1 is intended to empower the Citrus Health Management Areas. This recommendation advocates for improved insecticide-based ACP control efforts, integrated with cultural practices, which are expected to improve management and minimize the effects on the environment and human health. Success under Recommendations NI-2 and NI-3, both concerned with achieving the detection of infected but asymptomatic trees, also has the potential to greatly improve the effectiveness of the efforts described in Recommendation O-1.

TABLE 4-1 Recommended Changes in Organizations Connected to Citrus Production

O-1.

Create “Citrus Health Management Areas” in Florida.

O-2.

Identify one organization and empower it to have oversight responsibility over HLB research and development efforts.

O-3.

Create a centralized HLB website and data bank that is accessible to researchers and the public.

O-4.

Commission an analysis of the economics of the citrus industry’s responses to HLB.

O-5.

Organize an enhanced annual international symposium on all aspects of HLB.

Recommendation O-1 Create “Citrus Health Management Areas” in Florida to facilitate mitigation of HLB and other threats to citrus production.

Citrus production should be preserved against the immediate threat of HLB if efforts to achieve long-term and sustainable management are to have any value. We recommend the creation of Citrus Health Management Areas to coordinate management efforts in the near term. To operate effectively, a Citrus Health Management Area should have a relatively uniform incidence of HLB, i.e. disease pressure should be relatively constant across the area. The size should be 10,000–50,000 acres. A larger area favors more effective HLB mitigation but may



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