While Integrated Pest Management (IPM) is a sustainable approach of pest control, contributing to reduced use of pesticides and risks on human health and the environment, farmers have shown limited interest in practicing this method. The present study explored the levels of technical knowledge about integrated management of the olive fly (Bactrocera oleae
) among olive growers in Roudbar County of Iran and factors underpinning olive farmers’ technical knowledge of integrated management. Data were collected in a survey of olive farmers, on the basis of a structured questionnaire. Almost half of the farmers (48.4%) had good to excellent levels of technical knowledge of integrated management, while almost a third of the farmers (35.4%) had a moderate knowledge level. However, a noticeable portion of the farmers (15.9%) had poor knowledge of integrated management. Moreover, most farmers showed average knowledge of the adverse effects of pesticides on human health. While most farmers showed good levels of social participation, cooperation with institutes, and participation in extension activities, they showed low levels of community involvement (involvement in a group of people that have and share common interests with each other). Olive imports and the lack of a common action for olive fly control were perceived as the main barriers of IPM adoption among most farmers. Regression analysis revealed that increased community involvement, large area under olive farming, participation in education activities, and high farming experience promoted farmers’ technical knowledge of integrated olive fly control. Strengthening growers’ technical knowledge of IPM through community involvement and extension services among inexperienced small-scale olive farmers is recommended for reducing possible unnecessary insecticide sprays in olive production.
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