Open access peer-reviewed chapter - ONLINE FIRST

# Microbiological Control: A New Age of Maize Production

By Damilola Omobowale Seyi-Amole and Abiodun A. Onilude

Submitted: November 27th 2020Reviewed: March 29th 2021Published: July 23rd 2021

DOI: 10.5772/intechopen.97464

## Abstract

Maize is one of the world’s most widely grown and consumed cereal. It is known for its multipurpose use; it provides food and fuel to humans, feeds to animals and used as raw material in manufacturing industries. Globally, maize production is a large and significant market which produced 1,116.41 million tons in year 2020 and it’s expected to increase by 1.57% in year 2021. Pests and disease of maize cause significant damage to maize thereby reducing its’s yield and quality. There are many methods of controlling maize disease and pests; they include cultural, biological and chemical methods etc. Recent research studies have discovered an alternative agricultural practices that are sustainable and safe as compared to chemical control of pests and disease. However, biological control has gained large acceptance and its believed to yield positive outcome as compared to chemical control. Various microorganisms are used to control pathogens of maize and thus, there is a need to understand better their interactions with plants. Furthermore, microorganism known as entomopathogens are used to control arthropods. They are biopesticides that play integral role in Pest Management. This section focuses on microbiological control of pathogens and arthropods, their mechanisms of action, applications and the future of entomopathogenic microorganisms and microbiological control of pathogens.

### Keywords

• maize
• pathogens
• pests
• microbiological control
• entomopathogens

## 1. Introduction

Corn, also referred to as Maize, Zea mays, is an annual grass in the family Poaceae and is the third most widely grown cereal after wheat and rice throughout the world [1]. It is a staple food crop which has a total production of 1.09 billion metric tons achieved in 2018/2019, [2] and still a vital source of energy and protein in humans’ diet and animals, hence ensuring food security globally [3]. The United States was recorded to be the largest corn producer in the world with an estimated volume of 345 million metric tons in 2019/20 which is approximately one third of corn produced globally. In that year, China and Brazil were the next top corn producing countries after the United States [4].

The origin of corn is quite unknown but history revealed that corn was first domesticated in Mexico’s Tehuacan Valley. There are several types of corn which include sweet corn, popcorn, pod corn, flint corn, flour corn, waxy corn and dent corn. In the United States corn is known to be an important crop and in the past few years, the country’s corn farmers experienced constant increases in annual revenues [4].

## 3. Conclusion

The presented chapter outlines the use microbiological control, an ecofriendly, non-toxic, effective and biodegradable alternative to chemical pesticides. It is also an effective strategy for pest and disease management but it requires developing beneficial microorganisms that are native to the soils where maize is grown [144]. However, for biological methods to reach their full potential, an increased research effort is required. Future functional studies are still needed to fully unravel this intricate alternative approach to pest and disease management of maize and thus help boost maize yield and improve food security.

## Conflicts of interest

All authors declare no conflict of interest.

chapter PDF

## More

© 2021 The Author(s). Licensee IntechOpen. This chapter is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

## How to cite and reference

### Cite this chapter Copy to clipboard

Damilola Omobowale Seyi-Amole and Abiodun A. Onilude (July 23rd 2021). Microbiological Control: A New Age of Maize Production [Online First], IntechOpen, DOI: 10.5772/intechopen.97464. Available from: