USAID offers 17 tractors to Georgia to combat stink bug infestation

  • The USAID handed over the tractors to the Georgian National Food Agency in Abasha. Photo: USAID., 1 Jun 2018 - 15:21, Tbilisi,Georgia

The United States Agency for International Development (USAID) is helping Georgia combat the country’s stink bug infestation problem by handing over 17 tractors to the Georgian National Food Agency in Abasha, in Georgia’s Samegrelo region.

These tractors are part of $6.5 million in assistance from the US Government to help Georgia fight the stink bug,” read the press release published by the USAID today.

To note, USAID’s Assistant Administrator Brock Bierman and Georgia’s Minister of Environment Protection and Agriculture Levan Davitashvili signed a Memorandum of Understanding on March 5 this year to help combat the stink bug in Georgia with new supplies such as tractors, sprayers and traps.

Furthermore, USAID promised to offer $3.5 million to this effect.

The brown marmorated stink bug, which damages crops, is widespread in Georgia and a real nuisance to Georgian farmers.

The pest was first reported in Georgia in 2015.

In 2016, the bugs destroyed a significant portion of the hazelnut harvest in western Georgia. 2017 entailed even more devastation and struck a wider area.

The Government of Georgia has already come up with a strategy to combat the brown marmorated stink bug problem for this year, which includes four main directions: an information campaign, the implementation of a monitoring system, stink bug control measures and scientific research.