Integrated Pest Management (IPM) has long been a way of life at Dole. Through innovative research, Dole has carefully integrated cultural, biological and, when necessary, chemical control measures into an all-encompassing pest management program that focuses on outbreak prevention. Dole’s pest control practices are constantly reviewed for their effectiveness, efficiency and environmental impact. Alternative methods are also subjected to rigorous evaluation to ensure that they offer a responsible and sustainable solution to the problem at hand.
Dole only uses conventional crop protection products as a last resort, meaning that pests are present in sufficient numbers to cause severe damage to fruit or vegetable quality. In such cases, Dole uses these products in limited quantities and with proper care so to respect health, safety and environmental standards, as well as maintain accordance with all applicable laws.
Dole makes extensive use of natural techniques, including biological controls (such as beneficial predatory wasps that attack certain harmful insect pests), bioantagonists (micro-organisms that infect specific pests), and alternative sources for fertilization and soil improvement (such as non-competing cover crops). Furthermore, the Company has a comprehensive research program dedicated to biological control agents (naturally occurring organisms that control pests and diseases) and also closely monitors worldwide scientific research in this area.