Integrated Pest Management (IPM)
The New York State Integrated Pest Management (IPM) Program seeks to transform chemically-intensive agriculture into an ecologically sound production system. Contrary to those who view IPM from the sideline and perceive the program as being focused on the management of pesticides, IPM is ecologically driven. It takes a holistic approach to understanding the relationships between organisms in the agro-ecosystem, to finding ways of enhancing natural pest management processes, and to adopting the cropping patterns most suited to the local environment.
Far from rationalizing pesticide use, integrated pest management seeks to prevent pest outbreaks. The emphasis of integrated pest management is therefore agro-ecosystem management rather than pesticide management. Similarly, IPM tools include biological control agents, cultural controls, host plant resistance and some chemicals - not pesticides alone. The program's desired outcome is increased overall social and environmental welfare in addition to the economic management of plant and animal pests.