International Organization for Biological Control

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The International Organization for Biological and Integrated Control, usually referred to as IOBC, is a professional organization affiliated with the International Union of Biological Sciences (IUBS) and aims to be an effective advocate for biological control, integrated pest management (IPM) and integrated production (IP).


The IOBC serves as a resource for international organizations, for example: the European Commission on sustainable use of pesticides [1] and the status of IPM in Europe,[2] the EC Regulation of Biological Control Agents (REBECA) with regard to invertebrate biological control agents,[3] the Consultative Group on International Agricultural Research on IPM (CGIAR),[4] the European Plant Protection Organization (EPPO) on biological control agents[5] and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) with respect to the Convention on Biological Diversity (CBD).[6][7]

History and structure[edit]

The complete history of the IOBC was published in 1988.[8] Briefly, in 1948 the idea of an international organization on biological control was conceived. By 1950 the IUBS decided to support the establishment of a "Commission Internationale de Lutte Biologique" (CILB) as part of the IUBS Division of Animal Biology and a committee was established to further this concept. In 1955 the statutes of the new organization were ratified by the IUBS and the first plenary session of the CILB took place at Antibes, France. In 1965, CILB changed its name from “Commission” to “Organization” thus becoming the “International Organization of Biological Control of Noxious Animals and Plants”. In 1969, under the auspices of the IUBS, an agreement was reached among organizations to merge IOBC and the “International advisory committee for biological Control” (active in English-speaking countries) into a single international organization under the name IOBC. The scientific journal Entomophaga (now superseded by BioControl) is the official journal of the new organization. In 1971 Global IOBC was established and the former IOBC became IOBC/WPRS, one of the regional sections.

There are now six regional sections world-wide:

Goals and purpose[edit]

The IOBC promotes the development of biological control and its application in integrated pest management and international cooperation to these ends.

The IOBC collects, evaluates and disseminates information about biological control and promotes national and international action concerning research, training of personnel, coordination of large-scale application and public awareness of the economic and social importance of biological control.

The IOBC arranges conferences, meetings and symposia, and takes other actions to implement its general objectives.

Global IOBC[edit]

In addition to serving as an umbrella organization for the six regional sections, the global organization publishes proceedings of meetings, a newsletter and books and has 10 working groups. These groups meet to discuss specific topics, usually agricultural pests, that often impact on biological control globally.

Quality Control Standards[edit]

Since using biological control agents is not like spraying a pesticide which gives immediate results, in order for growers to fully accept and use either biological control or an integrated pest management system, it is imperative that the quality of the control agents be uniformly good. For this purpose, a set of standards have been developed and updated, for assessing the quality control of commercially produced biological control agents.[9][10] These guidelines have also been accepted and are used by the scientific community (see a selection of references).[11][12][13][14][15]

Commission on Biological Control and Access and Benefit Sharing[edit]

In 2008 IOBC Global established a Commission on Biological Control and Access and Benefit Sharing.[16] Under the Convention on Biological Diversity, countries have sovereign rights over their genetic resources. Agreements governing the access to these resources and the sharing of the benefits arising from their use needs to be established between involved parties. These agreements were created for a number of reasons, among which was the disproportionate monetary advantage developed countries were realizing in the pharmaceutical market. However, since the agreements are all encompassing there have been unforeseen consequences. These agreements also apply to species collected for potential use in biological control. Recent applications of CBD principles have already made it difficult or impossible to collect and export natural enemies for biological control research in several countries.[17][18]

West Palaearctic Regional Section[edit]

The West Palaearctic Regional Section is the most active of the regional sections with 20 working groups (that focus on crops, agricultural pests, and other topics) and five commissions which usually meet in different locations in member countries. Additionally it produces the IOBC/WPRS Bulletin which is recognized by the United States Department of Agriculture as one of the top research journals on organic production and organic food,[19] newsletters and books.[20]

Pesticide Side-Effects Standards[edit]

The Pesticides and Beneficial Organisms working group is made up of scientists from many countries. They established standards, which are periodically updated, for testing the side effects of pesticides on a large range of natural enemies and ranking those effects.[21][22][23][24] The purpose of establishing these standards was to provide a means by which pesticides could be ranked for their effect on beneficial organisms and pesticide testing could be compared from all regions of the world. With the results obtained from these standardized tests, selective pesticides for beneficial arthropods can be identified in order to enhance biological control in plant protection and reduce the impact of pesticides on non-target organisms.[25] These standards which have been adopted by the scientific community in countries world-wide (see a brief selection of recent publications).[26][27][28][29]

Integrated Production[edit]

One of the commissions is on Integrated Production (IP), a concept of sustainable agriculture based on the use of natural resources and regulating mechanisms to replace potentially polluting inputs.[30][31] The agronomic preventative measures and biological/physical/ chemical methods are carefully selected and balanced taking into account the protection of health of both farmers and consumers and of the environment. As such a Commission in Integrated Production and Integrated Pest Management was established and crop specific IP guidelines established for pome fruits, stone fruits, arable crops in Europe, grapes, soft fruits, olives, citrus and field grown vegetables.[32][33]

Official languages[edit]

The Organization’s official languages are English and French, although other languages may be spoken in some regional meetings.

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Sustainable use of Pesticides".
  2. ^ Agra CEAS (2002). "Integrated crop management systems in the EU" (PDF).
  3. ^ "Regulation if invertebrate biological control agents in Europe: review and recommendations in its pursuit of a harmonised regulatory system" (PDF).
  4. ^ "CGIAR Systemwide Program on Integrated Pest Management (SP-IPM)".
  5. ^ "2nd Joint EPPO/IOBC Panel Meeting on Biological Control Agents". 2009.
  6. ^ Haas, F., van Lenteren, J.C., Cock, M.J.W.; et al. "Is the Convention on Biological Diversity promoting environmentally friendly solutions to pest control?".CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  7. ^ Cock, M.J.W., van Lenteren, J.C., Brodeur, J.; et al. (2010). "The use and exchange of biological control agents for food and agriculture" (PDF).CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)[permanent dead link]
  8. ^ Franz, J.M. (1988). "Highlights in the development of the International Organization for Biological Contreol of noxious animals and plants". BioControl. 33 (2): 131–134. doi:10.1007/bf02372647.
  9. ^ Bigler, F. (1992). Report of the sixth workshop of the IOBC global working group "Quality control of mass reared arthropods". pp. 1–26.
  10. ^ van Lenteren, J.C., Hale, A., Klapwijk, J.N.; et al. (2003). "Guidelines for quality control of commercially produced natural enemies". In van Lenteren, J.C. (ed.). Quality Control and Production of Biological Control Agents: Theory and Testing Procedures. CABI publishing.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  11. ^ Hassan S.A.; Zhang, W.Q. (2001). "Variability in Quality of Trichogramma brassicae (Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae) from Commercial Suppliers in Germany" (PDF). Biological Control. 22 (2): 115–121. doi:10.1006/bcon.2001.0962.
  12. ^ Fernandez, C.; Nentwig, W. "Quality control of the parasitoid Aphidius colemani (Hy., Aphidiidae) used for biological control in greenhouses". Journal of Applied Entomology. 121: 1–5.
  13. ^ Prezotti, L.R., Parra, J.R.P., Vencovsky, R.; et al. (2002). "Flight Test as Evaluation Criterion for the Quality of Trichogramma pretiosum Riley (Hymenoptera: Trichogrammatidae): Adaptation of the Methodology". Neotropical Entomology. 31 (3): 411–417. doi:10.1590/S1519-566X2002000300010.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  14. ^ Vasquez, G.M, Orr D.B. and Baker, J.R. (2004). "Quality assessment of selected commercially available whitefly and aphid biological control agents in the United States". Journal of Economic Entomology. 97 (3): 781–788. doi:10.1603/0022-0493(2004)097[0781:QAOSCA]2.0.CO;2. ISSN 0022-0493. PMID 15279253.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  15. ^ Luczynski, A., Nyrop, J.P., and Shi, A. (2008). "Pattern of female reproductive age classes in mass-reared populations of Phytoseiulus persimilis (Acari: Phytoseiidae) and its influence on population characteristics and quality of predators following cold storage". Biological Control. 47 (2): 159–166. doi:10.1016/j.biocontrol.2008.07.014.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  16. ^ Barratt, B.I.P. (2009). "A review of access and benefit-sharing for biological control: What does it mean for New Zealand?". New Zealand Plant Protection. 62: 152–155.
  17. ^ Cock, M.J.W., van Lenteren, J.C., Brodeur, J.; et al. (2010). "Do new Access and Benefit Sharing procedures under the convention on Biological Diversity threaten the future of biological control?". BioControl. 55 (2): 199–218. doi:10.1007/s10526-009-9234-9.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  18. ^ Haas, F., Lohr, B., Munyi, P.; et al. (2007). "Access to biocontrol agents to combat invasive alien species and the Access and Benefit Sharing regulations" (PDF).CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)[permanent dead link]
  19. ^ USDA Journal List
  20. ^ Publications
  21. ^ Hassan, E., Oomen, P.A., Overmeer, P.; et al. (1985). "Standard methods to test the side-effects of pesticides on natural enemies of insects and mites developed by the IOBC/WPRS Working Group 'Pesticides and Beneficial Organisms'". EPPO Bulletin. 15 (2): 214–255. doi:10.1111/j.1365-2338.1985.tb00224.x.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)[dead link]
  22. ^ Hassan, S.A., Bigler, F., Bogenschutz, H.; et al. (1994). "Results of the sixth joint pesticide testing programme of the IOBC/WPRS-working group 'Pesticides and Beneficial Organisms'". BioControl. 39: 107–119. doi:10.1007/bf02373500.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  23. ^ Sterk, G., Hassan, S.A., Baillod, M.; et al. (1999). "Results of the seventh joint pesticide testing programme carried out by the IOBC/WPRS-Working Group 'Pesticides and Beneficial Organisms'". BioControl. 44: 99–117. doi:10.1023/A:1009959009802.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  24. ^ Candolfi, M.P., Blumel, S., Forester, R.; et al. (2000). "Guidelines to evaluate side-effects of plant protection products to non-target arthropods Joint initiative IOBC, BART and EPPO" (PDF).CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  25. ^ Bellows, T.S.; Fisher, T.W. (1999). Chapter 13 Enhanced Biological Control through Pesticide Selectivity. In: Bellows, T.S.; Fisher, T.W. Handbook of Biological Control. Academic Press.
  26. ^ Sabahi, Q, Rasekh, A., Sanqaki, A.H., and Garjan, A. (2009). "The persistence toxicity of three insecticides against adult of a thelytokous parasitoid, Lysiphlebus fabarum (Hymenoptera: Aphidiidae)". Commun. Agric. Appl. Biol. Sci. 74 (1): 159–164. PMID 20218524.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  27. ^ Venkatesan, T., Jalali, S.K., Murthy, K.S.; et al. (2009). "Occurrence of insecticide resistance in field populations of Chrysoperla zastrowi arabica (Neuroptera: Chrysopidae) in India". Commun. Agric. Appl. Biol. Sci. 79: 910–912.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  28. ^ Giolo, F.P., Medina, P., Grutzmacher, A.D.; et al. (2009). "Effects of pesticides commonly used in peach orchards in Brazil on predatory lacewing Chrysoperla carnea under laboratory conditions". BioControl. 54 (5): 625–635. doi:10.1007/s10526-008-9197-2.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  29. ^ Nash, M., Hoffmann, A. & Thomson, L. (2010). "Identifying signatures of pesticide applications on indigenous and invasive non-target arthropod communities from vineyards". Ecological Applications. 20 (6): 1693–1703. doi:10.1890/09-1065. PMID 20945768.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)[permanent dead link]
  30. ^ "Washington State University Organic & Integrated Fruit Production". Archived from the original on 2010-05-31. Retrieved 2010-05-24.
  31. ^ Vereijken (1990). chapter 18 Research on integrated arable farming and organic mixed farming in The Netherlands. In: Edwards, C.A., Lal, R., Madden, P.; et al. Sustainable Agricultural Systems. United States Agency for International Development.CS1 maint: Multiple names: authors list (link)
  32. ^ Dickler (1992). "Current situation of integrated plant-protection (IPP) in orchards in IOBC WPRS". ACTA Phytopathologica et Entomologica Hungarica. 27: 23–28.
  33. ^ Galli (1992). "Present status of guidelines for integrated fruit production and marketing in the Federal Republic aof Germany (FRG)". ACTA Phytopathologica et Entomologica Hungarica. 27: 251–256.