The program for eliminating White Fly which is harmful to the domestic coconut industry reported first from the Kegalle district in the year 2019 is now in action at village level. This program is launched in association with the Coconut Research Institute and Coconut Cultivation Board under the guidance of Hon. (Dr.) Ramesh Pathirana, Minister of Plantation Industries. Another step of the series of this program was launched at Batuwatte, Ragama on 6th October.
Public were basically made aware of the White Fly threat along with examples. And also, they were informed about the pesticides, its dosage and method of eliminating White Fly. In addition, practical was done how to use a formula of soap water with Neem oil to eliminate White Fly. It was mentioned that White Flies could be eliminated by properly spraying this formula on the backside of coconut leaves for wetting them well once in two weeks for a period of 2 months and in addition, it was mentioned that attracting adult files can be mitigated by hanging grease applied yellow color polythene around the trunk of coconut trees.
The Coconut Research Institute under the Ministry of Plantation Industries has already set up an emergency hotline 1928 and also introduced a WhatsApp number of 0704001928 in respect of the matters arisen in coconut cultivation including White Flies. The public may have a basic knowledge on the coconut related diseases or menaces by sending photographs to the said WhatsApp number.
This event for providing practical knowledge on the White Files menace was graced by officials of the Coconut Research Institute including its Chairman Dr. Saranga Alapperuma and some other officials of line institutions including the Regional Manager of Coconut Cultivation Board in Gampaha District Mr. Kapila Hettiarachchi. This White Flies elimination programs is being implemented continuously in those districts where the menace has been recognized.