$280 Million Allocated to Screwworm Eradication Project

The Eradication of New World Screwworm Project will benefit from a budgetary allocation of $280 million this financial year, as set out in the 2007/08 Estimates of Expenditure, tabled in the House last week.
The Government and the International Atomic Funding Agency-funded project aims to eradicate the new screwworm, an insect that causes destructive myiasis in warm blooded animals, including humans. Eradication will be achieved by the use of sterile insect techniques (STI), supported by prevention, control, and quarantine measures, and will result in increased food production.
Among the anticipated physical targets for the 2007/08 fiscal year are: the production, processing and distribution of sterile flies; the release of 24 million flies per week; the continuation of public awareness campaigns through electronic and print media; field activities and the distribution of insecticides islandwide. During the fiscal year, the project is expected to complete the eradication process and declare the country screwworm free.
Up to January 2007, the Eradication of New World Screwworm Project was able to: purchase and process approximately 12.685 billion pupae; dispersed approximately 9.372 billion sterile screwworm; distribute over 2 million packets of insecticides and sample collection tubes; conduct fly trapping and eggs mass collection activities across the island; developed and aired radio and television advertisements; designed, printed and distributed over 960,000 flyers and pamphlets targeted at specific groups; participated in agricultural shows, such as Denbigh, Minard, among others; and overhauled chilled fly unit, facilitating greater efficiency.

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