Pest risk assessment of Spodoptera frugiperda for the European Union

EFSA Panel on Plant Health (EFSA PLH Panel)

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    163 Citations (Scopus)


    EFSA was asked for a partial risk assessment of Spodoptera frugiperda for the territory of the EU focussing on the main pathways for entry, factors affecting establishment, risk reduction options and pest management. As a polyphagous pest, five commodity pathways were examined in detail. Aggregating across these and other pathways, we estimate that tens of thousands to over a million individual larvae could enter the EU annually on host commodities. Instigating risk reduction options on sweetcorn, a principal host, reduces entry on that pathway 100-fold. However, sweetcorn imports are a small proportion of all S. frugiperda host imports, several of which are already regulated and further regulation is estimated to reduce the median number entering over all pathways by approximately 10%. Low temperatures limit the area for establishment but small areas of Spain, Italy and Greece can provide climatic conditions suitable for establishment. If infested imported commodities are distributed across the EU in proportion to consumer population, a few hundreds to a few thousands of individuals would reach NUTS 2 regions within which suitable conditions for establishment exist. Although S. frugiperda is a known migrant, entry directly into the EU from extant populations in sub-Saharan Africa is judged not feasible. However, if S. frugiperda were to establish in North Africa, in the range of thousands to over two million adults could seasonally migrate into the southern EU. Entry into suitable NUTS2 areas via migration will be greater than via commercial trade but is contingent on the establishment of S. frugiperda in North Africa. The likelihood of entry of the pest via natural dispersal could only be mitigated via control of the pest in Africa. If S. frugiperda were to arrive and become a pest of maize in the EU, Integrated Pest Management (IPM) or broad spectrum insecticides currently used against existing pests could be applied.

    Original languageEnglish
    Article numbere05351
    Number of pages120
    JournalEFSA Journal
    Issue number8
    Publication statusPublished - Aug 2018

    Bibliographical note

    © 2018 European Food Safety Authority. EFSA Journal published by John Wiley and Sons Ltd on behalf of European Food Safety Authority.

    This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs License, which permits use and distribution in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited and no modifications or adaptations are made.


    • @risk
    • fall armyworm
    • migration
    • pathway model
    • pest establishment
    • phytosanitary measures
    • quantitative risk assessment

    ASJC Scopus subject areas

    • Parasitology
    • Food Science
    • Microbiology
    • Animal Science and Zoology
    • veterinary (miscalleneous)
    • Plant Science


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