The Edmund Mach Foundation (FEM) is an Italian center of excellence for education, research, and outreach in agriculture, bioeconomy, ecology, biodiversity, and food systems. The core activities of FEM are focused on improving the resilience and competitiveness of agricultural communities and promoting the health critical natural resources and ecosystems. Whitin FEM, the Plant Protection Unit is engaged in promoting the sustainable protection of agricultural crops from insect pests (agricultural entomology) and microorganisms (plant pathology and microbiology), reducing chemical inputs in agriculture, enhancing the useful environmental components (pollinators, endophytes, biocontrol agents and biofertilizers), preventing and/or containing the spread of invasive alien species and preserving biological fertility of the soil, in a global change context.

Claudio Ioriatti is an Agronomist and Fruit Entomologist at FEM. His research, past and present, concerns the development of novel strategies for the integrated fruit and grape production, biological control of pests, implementation of mating disruption technique and other semiochemicals-based tools. His long-lasting experience on IPM and his internationally based research is recognized by IOBC convenorship of the working group “Integrated Protection of Fruit Crops” from 2008 to 2022. He is fellow of the Accademia dei Georgofili (2009), awarded by the USDA with a Certificate of Appreciation (2011) and honored of the National Full professorship in Entomology (2014).

Valerio Rossi Stacconi is an Entomologist/Agronomist in the Plant Protection Unit at FEM. He addresses his research activity to the study of insect morphology, physiology, chemical ecology, and behavior integrating this knowledge within the frame of IPM to develop novel methods of insect pest control. Currently, he conducts research on exotic biocontrol agents to implement classical biocontrol programs that improve farms productivity and profitability while reducing environmental impacts.