It is unlikely that the predatory mite Amblyseius andersoni can become established and survive in Norway. This conclusion is uncertain due to a lack of information about the mite's climate tolerance.
That is the key message in a risk assessment by VKM about Amblyseius andersoni. The assessment was requested by the Norwegian Food Safety Authority.
The background for the request is because of an application for approval of the Biological control product ANDERcontrol for use in Norway. Amblyseius andersoni is the active organism of the product, which is mainly used to counteract different types of mites on fruits, ornamental plants, vegetables, strawberries, blueberries and citrus fruits. This predatory mite has not been registered as a naturally occurring species in Norway.
The species can hibernate. Thus, theoretically, it can survive in Norwegian climatic conditions. However, VKM considers the species unlikely to survive cold winters and cool summers. "We also believe there is little risk for it to spread from greenhouses, because neither wind nor other factors are effective pathways to areas where the mite can thrive outdoors," says Johan Stenberg, academic leader of the project team.
Conclusions are uncertain due to insufficient information about the species' climate tolerance.
VKM has not found any reports describing damage to humans from the predatory mite or from organisms accompanying it. In general, mites can trigger allergic reactions in sensitive individuals who handle plant material containing a lot of mites. There is reason to believe that this also applies to Amblyseius andersoni.
This risk assessment is approved by VKM's Panel on Plant Health.
The project group in VKM consists of:The project group in the VKM consist ofJohan Stenberg, VKM member and