Management of Citrus Huanglongbing in the State of São Paulo, Brazil
In São Paulo State (SPS), the occurrence of several citrus diseases and pests has largely increased fruit production costs. Huanglongbing (HLB), caused by two Candidatus Liberibacter species, is currently the most important citrus disease in the country. First reported in Brazil in 2004, HLB is already present in 268 municipalities affecting 24% of the more than 96 thousand citrus blocks. Control measures include elimination of symptomatic trees, insecticide application against the vector of the disease, Diaphorina citri, and planting healthy trees produced in screened nurseries. Tree elimination is mandatory but has not been adopted in all farms, where HLB incidence has increased considerably. This situation affected the effectiveness of disease control in their neighbors. Important research questions to improve disease management also need answers, despite the wide perception that only the increase in citrus resistance to liberibacter or D. citri will bring long-term solution to the HLB problem.