Fumigation is a method of pest control that completely fills an area with gaseous pesticides or fumigants to suffocate or poison the pests within.It is utilized for control of pests in buildings, soil, grain, and produce, and is also used during processing of goods to be imported or exported to prevent transfer of exotic organisms. Commodities such as food grains, oilseeds, pulses, extractions, spices, tobacco, textile, timber etc., which are major items in today’s export market, are highly susceptible to infestation from stored grain pests during storage and transit.
Transporting goods in ships and aircrafts between countries using containers is an economic and well established practice. Fumigation becomes necessary in order to keep away exotic pests and diseases entering into the country while permitting reasonably rapid clearance of containers. Timber insects pose a significant Quarantine risk in all countries and accordingly all wooden packing material used in the export packing should be fumigated. By carrying out fumigation at the port of loading clearance of the container at the discharge port can be done without any infestation problem. Fumigation helps in controlling outdoor mosquitoes, insects and other such as pests and is mandatory for any locality.
As it is said “Prevention is better than cure”, it is necessary to follow good sanitation and scientific storage methods for maintaining the cargo in sound condition prior to export. Fumigation operation is effective and a better option than any other methods of pest control because in fumigation process the fumigant circulates and spreads to all areas of infestation whereas spraying operation or other methods of pest control will be less effective.
Another important thing that needs attention is treatment of packing material since untreated packing materials are prone to infestation and become carriers for introducing new pests to other Countries. Therefore wooden packing material should be treated prior to export.
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