What is Integrated Pest Management?

The IPM Institute of America definition: 
Integrated Pest Management (IPM) maintains a high standard of pest control while reducing reliance on pesticides. IPM includes regular monitoring to detect problems early; acting against pests only when necessary; choosing the most effective option with the least risk to people and the environment; and applying biological knowledge about pests to create long-term solutions. | MORE

There is widespread support for the use of Integrated Pest Management (IPM)

State Integrated Pest Management - Quick Facts

IPM is less toxic than conventional pest control methods:

a. “Expanding IPM programs…would reduce human health risks posed by pests…and also reduce or mitigate the adverse environmental effects of pest management practices.” -- USDA National Roadmap for Integrated Pest Management,  May, 2004

b. “IPM is the responsible way to approach more lasting pest management solutions.” -- Washington State Dept. of Agriculture, 2001 Legislative Report

c. “Integrated pest management, when viewed by traditional economics, often results in lower costs than conventional pest management. If other costs, for which dollar signs are not readily available, are considered, then the balance shifts further towards IPM.” -- US Environmental Protection Agency

d. “In managing pests, the emphasis should be placed on minimizing the use of broad spectrum chemicals, and on maximizing the use of sanitation, biological controls and selective methods of application.” -- American Public Health Association


Other definitions of IPM:

The State of California defined IPM as such:
"…a pest management strategy that focuses on long-term prevention or suppression of pest problems through a combination of techniques such as monitoring for pest presence and establishing treatment threshold levels, using non-chemical practices to make the habitat less conducive to pest development, improving sanitation, and employing mechanical and physical controls. Pesticides that pose the least possible hazard and are effective in a manner that minimizes risks to people, property, and the environment, are used only after careful monitoring indicates they are needed according to pre-established guidelines and treatment thresholds."

“Integrated pest management”, a comprehensive strategy of pest control whose major objective is to achieve desired levels of pest control in an environmentally responsible manner by combining multiple pest control measures to reduce the need for reliance on chemical pesticides; more specifically, a combination of pest controls which addresses conditions that support pests and may include, but is not limited to, the use of monitoring techniques to determine immediate and ongoing need for pest control, increased sanitation, physical barrier methods, the use of natural pest enemies and a judicious use of lowest risk pesticides when necessary.

The department shall promote the use of biologic controls, integrated pest management, sustainable agriculture and other alternate pest control methods through education, technical assistance and research in order to reduce or eliminate, whenever possible, human or environmental exposures to chemical pesticides.

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