Spotted Lanternfly poses serious threat
WASHINGTON, D.C. (WHEC) — Congressman Joe Morelle is calling for action to address an invasive species affecting agriculture across the country.
The Spotted Lanternfly is an insect that destroys various cash crops such as grapevines and hops plants. Morelle said that this could devastate wine and beer production, putting farmers, winemakers, and brewers at serious risk.
Tuesday, Morelle asked for full funding from the Animal Plant Health Inspection Services Specialty Crop Pest Program in the Fiscal Year 2023 Agricultural Appropriations bill to help combat and eradicate the Spotted Lanternfly from the U.S.
"I am deeply concerned by the rate at which the invasive Spotted Lanternfly has spread across America and the serious threat it poses to the future of our agricultural economy," said Congressman Joe Morelle. "Millions of dollars in damage to our crops and thousands of jobs are on the line unless we take meaningful action to stop its spread. That is why I am calling for robust funding to be included in this year’s appropriations bill so we can stop the Spotted Lanternfly in its tracks and protect the livelihood of our local farmers.”
The species was first discovered in 2014 in Pennsylvania and has been found in many parts of the country, including here in the northeast. Although the insect wreaks havoc on crops, is not dangerous to humans.
"Without immediate action to stop the spread of this invasive species, the livelihood of our breweries, wineries, and so many other small businesses are in jeopardy," said Congressman Joe Morelle."
The FY23 appropriations request can be read below.