State Agriculture and Forestry Commissioner Mike Strain said the beginning of the cotton harvest brings an influx of used cotton harvest equipment moving into and through the state of Louisiana.

“Since the boll weevil has been eradicated here in Louisiana, the investment made by the state and the cotton producers must be protected by preventing the reintroduction of boll weevils,” Strain said in a news release.

“Reintroductions usually occur when used cotton harvest equipment from a boll weevil infested area travels through the state or stops within the state to conduct harvest operations without being properly inspected and certified as boll weevil free.”

Used cotton harvest equipment includes cotton pickers, cotton module builders, cotton module trucks, boll buggies, tractors, trailers and any other equipment potentially harboring cotton debris or boll weevils.

Fumigation certifications will be required, Strain said.

“Once the equipment stops anywhere within the state of Louisiana, our department must be notified so we may conduct an inspection of the equipment and review all pertinent documentation.”

For more information regarding the requirements for the movement of used cotton equipment, contact the State Department of Agriculture and Forestry’s Boll Weevil Eradication Program office at (225) 952-8031.