Revised ANSES opinion on the efficacy of the Ophraella communa beetle used as a biological control agent against common ragweed and assessment of the possible associated risks
ANSES initially issued an internal request on 08 September 2014 to carry out an expert appraisal on assessment of the phytosanitary risks related to the accidental or deliberate introduction of Ophraella communa, a natural enemy of common ragweed, as a biological control agent.
The Ministries of Health, Agriculture and the Environment then requested on 31 March 2015 that ANSES carry out an expert appraisal further to the first, entitled “The efficacy of the Ophraella communa beetle used as a biological control agent against common ragweed and assessment of the possible associated risks”.
Questions dealt with in the expert appraisal
ANSES was asked to:
- analyse the efficacy of O. communa used as a biological control agent against ragweed;
- assess all the possible risks, including those for human health, of its use as part of a biological control system and its possible development after introduction into these habitats;
- determine, following a cost-benefit assessment, whether it is possible to use this beetle to control ragweed, and if so, to indicate under which conditions and to propose application protocols to minimise the possible indirect effects.