Hyderabad, October 13, 2015 : Rising input cost, shortage of labour and water are some of the problems faced by the farmers of Asian Pacific region, of which India is the major country.

Weeds, the unwanted plants grown along with the crops, compete with crops for fertilizers and water applied to crops resulting in huge losses in crop productivity to the extent of 33% which is more than the losses caused by either diseases (20%) or insect pests (26%). It is estimated that weeds cause an economic loss of over Rs 50,000 crores per annum in India alone.

Manual weeding is the most common method followed by farmers of Asian-Pacific region. However, urbanization and other socio-economic factors have seriously affected the availability of labour, making farmers to use herbicides, for the control of weeds. Herbicides, although efficient and economical in controlling weeds, may cause toxicity to the biological and environmental components of agro-ecosystem toxicity to the user and the environment, if used unscientifically.

Weeds are also a problem in non-crop areas, forestry, public amenity areas and water bodies. The invasive weeds such as parthenium weed; water hyacinth and lantana are a potential threat to biodiversity and impact human and animal health. In view of the importance of weeds, in order to share knowledge and technologies developed in the recent past that are relevant to the Asia-Pacific region; the IndianSociety of Weed Science is organizing the 25th Asian-Pacific Weed Science Society (APWSS) Conference at PJTSAU, Hyderabad from 13-16th October, 13 and 16. Nearly 700 delegates including over 120 delegates over 20 countries are attending this 25th APWSS Conference.

The deliberations will benefit scientists and students to update their knowledge and familiarize with the recent advances in the field of weed science for fostering international collaboration and developing farmers need based weed management technologies that are effective, economical and eco-friendly.