The Ministry of Agriculture said it was stepping up its prevention of fall army worm, an invasive insect species which damages crops. The insect was first detected in China’s southern Yunnan province in 2019.
Officials report finding the insect in seven provinces already and describe the situation as “more severe” than last year. The pest has been detected further north than it had travelled previously and had reached northern regions 30 days sooner than it had last year.
The central and local governments have contributed 4.63 billion yuan ($685m USD) for the purchases of pesticides and herbicides in 2022.