Japanese tree fruits offer high-quality size, appearance, sugar content, and flavor. Japanese green tea is also well-regarded for its superb flavor and abundant beneficial natural components. However, pests seriously damage fruit and tea production when no countermeasures are used in Japan's temperate conditions. In international trade, phytosanitary needs for plant protection must also be satisfied to enable export of high-quality Japanese fruit. Export foods must also satisfy the importing country's maximum residue limits for pesticides. Proliferation of newly detected pests poses a major threat to fruit and tea production, and there are demands to reduce the use of chemical pesticides, with the aims of maintaining a sustainable environment and achieving the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals.
Against this backdrop, this division will develop novel, effective control methods for pests and diseases that affect fruit trees and tea plants - methods that can reduce pesticide use. This division is developing (1) plant sanitation measures such as disinfection methods for pests that are problematic in export, (2) novel pest control methods, including for especially intractable pests due to pesticide resistance and soil-borne pathogens, through effective use of natural enemies, and for physical environmental change. The division will also demonstrate an integrated pest management system that meets industrial demand for countermeasures against harmful pests that affect fruit trees and tea plants.