A Message from the Secretary
Finding a solution to the glassy-winged sharpshooter/Pierce's disease pest problem is one of my top priorities. I am committed to moving aggressively and effectively against this serious pest/disease combination which threatens so many key crops in California.

My first concern when I heard about this problem was that the resources directed against it be used effectively. To this end, CDFA quickly took on the role of providing statewide coordination of regional efforts. The task forces I have appointed have had broad representation to encourage statewide coordination.

Combating this problem defies a simple solution and demands a multi-pronged approach. In a very short time, the various stakeholders - CDFA, USDA, County Agricultural Commissioners, the University of California, and the agricultural industry - have worked together to develop a strategy for fighting this problem.

We are now implementing a statewide management program composed of the following four primary elements:
  • Inspection of nursery stock moving from infested counties and from other states to slow the spread of the pest;
  • Statewide survey to determine the distribution of glassy-winged sharpshooter;
  • Establishment of multi-county pest management areas to begin treatment in infested areas or to develop contingency plans to prepare for infestation; and
  • Aggressive public outreach to educate growers and others about the seriousness of this pest problem.
Any actions we take must be firmly based on the best available science. Consequently, research on glassy-winged sharpshooter and Pierce's disease is another vital part of our strategy against this pest complex.

I am extremely gratified by the responsiveness of all stakeholders in helping to combat this pest, and look forward to their continued cooperation and contributions to this effort.

William (Bill) J. Lyons, Jr., Secretary,
California Department of Food and Agriculture