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Crop-eating fall armyworm spreads across Asia, small farmers worst hit

Asia's millions of smallholder farmers - many with less than an acre of land - are likely to take a bigger hit

Indian Farmers  |  Fall Armyworm

Reuters  |  Thailand 

Looking out at his empty, red-earth field, Thai farmer Puang Timdon said his two-week-old maize crop didn't stand a chance against the fall armyworm pest. "All the 8 rai (1.28 hectare) I planted were all heavily infested," said the 42-year-old from his farm in Ban Nong Tor town in Pak Chong district, 180 km (120 miles) northeast of the capital Bangkok. "The worm ate the whole field in three days, leaving so much damage that it wasn't worth saving." Fall armyworm, a caterpillar that got the name because it invades croplands in droves, much like an ...

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First Published: Thu, June 20 2019. 13:47 IST