About ASTA Pest Database for Seeds (PeDS)

Methodology for adding pests to the database:

ASTA identifies pests through notifications submitted by governments to the World Trade Organization (WTO), import permit lists from National Plant Protection Authorities (NPPOs), and reports of shipment rejections from the seed industry. Companies and stakeholders are encouraged to report seed-related pest issues using the “Contact Us” feature located on the PeDS website. Before information is included in PeDS, an extensive literature search is conducted, following processes similar to the International Seed Federation’s (ISF) Regulated Pest Database. Key sources of technical information include the Commonwealth Agricultural Bureau International (CABI) database; the European and Mediterranean Plant Protection Organization (EPPO); technical information developed by the International Seed Testing Association (ISTA); and other peer-reviewed information available in scientific journals and publications. ASTA reviews and curates relevant citations. Pest data sheets are updated every three years.

Once a pest is identified for inclusion into PeDs, an extensive literature search is conducted. ASTA uses the same processes, procedures, and rules as are used for the International Seed Federation’s (ISF) Regulated Pest Database. Primary sources of information include the CABI database, EPPO database, ISTA, computer literature and library searches. As these databases often contain abstracts and other references that have not been replaced with peer reviewed articles, are contradictory, or do not contain the latest articles, ASTA reviews all citations and selects the ones that contain the latest relevant information, scientific scrutiny, and interpretation. All data sheets are then peer reviewed prior to entry into PEDs. These pest data sheets are reviewed/updated every 3 years.

Relationship to other seed pest databases:

PeDS compiles information about pest names, distribution, and hosts from the CABI Crop Protection Compendium and the USDA ARS Fungal Databases. For consistency, scientific names for pests were harmonized with the Crop Protection Compendium. Information is also obtained directly from scientific journals for the most current and emerging pests that may not be in other databases yet.

Whenever possible, PeDS is harmonized with the ISF Regulated Pest List Database. The ISF regulated pest database is similar to PeDS in terms of what pest information is included. For example, Terminology and other parameters used in the ISF database are the same as are used in PeDS. However, there is one major distinction between the ASTA PeDS and ISF databases. The ISF Regulated Pest List database is organized by commodity and contains information on all pests that are collectively regulated globally for a given commodity. In contrast, ASTA’s PeDS database is organized by pest species and contains additional information on pests and plant hosts that may not yet be listed the ISF database for commodities. As ISF adds commodity species to its database, these two databases will eventually merge over time.

USDA APHIS Phytosanitary Export Database (PExD):

USDA APHIS maintains the Phytosanitary Export Database (PExD), which is a database that compiles the phytosanitary requirements for export of U.S.-origin seed to most countries. USDA APHIS curates the information within PExD from information published by other National Plant Protection Organizations (NPPOs). ASTA works closely with APHIS to update information in ASTA PeDS to align with APHIS PExD based on its reviews, updates, and analyses of pest information. As a result, pests’ species can be added or removed, and phytosanitary measures such as seed treatments or seed health testing requirements can be updated.

About ASTA

Founded in 1883, the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA) is one of the oldest trade organizations in the United States. Its membership consists of nearly 700 companies, universities, and stakeholders involved in seed production and distribution, plant breeding, and related industries in North America. As an authority on plant germplasm, ASTA works to promote science and address policy issues that are of industry-wide importance. ASTA’s mission is to be an effective voice of action in all matters concerning the development, marketing, and movement of seed, associated products, and services throughout the world. ASTA promotes the development of better seed to produce better crops for a better quality of life. For more information, visit our website at betterseed.org.

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