Philippine Standard Time

Queen Pineapple NICER Program pushes for improved pest and disease management

Research and development on Queen Pineapple, the country’s “sweetest pineapple variety,” under the Department of Science and Technology’s (DOST) Niche Centers in the Regions for R&D (NICER) Program continue to reap accomplishments.

NICER Program leader Dr. Arlene C. Alegre reported the development of a software that can detect, classify, and recommend crop protection management strategies. Based on initial simulations, said software can produce 95–98% accuracy in terms of pest identification and classification.

Over 50,000 images of the most common Queen pineapple pests were captured in various farm sites in Camarines Norte as datasets for the software. These pests include white grub, mealy bugs, termites, ants, june beetle, and souring beetle.


In addition to this working system on pest management, the team is also developing a methodology for fast detection of pineapple mealybug wilt disease (PMWD), a major pest identified in a completed program funded by the Council. Other program accomplishments include the standardization of planting materials, assessment of different resource management practices, dissemination of technologies considering gender relations, and technology transfer.

These accomplishments were reported during a program review held recently by the Crops Research Division (CRD) of the DOST-Philippine Council for Agriculture, Aquatic, and Natural Resources Research and Development (DOST-PCAARRD).

The virtual program review was attended by program team members from CNSC and DA RFO V, Dr. Calixto M. Protacio from the University of the Philippines Los Baños, Dr. Jocelyn C. Perez of Benguet State University, Mr. Nikko B. Delos Reyes from the DOST-Office of the Undersecretary for Research and Development (DOST-OUSECRD) Science for Change Program (S4CP), and DOST-PCAARRD CRD led by Program Management and Evaluation, Project-based Information System (PME-PBIS) Section Head, Ms. Leilani D. Pelegrina and Industry Strategic S&T Program (ISP) Manager for Queen Pineapple, Ms. Kimberly Zarah B. Locsin.