* Severe damage to coconut cultivation in Sri Lanka due to leaf disease

Oct 14, Colombo: Sri Lanka Ministry of Agriculture says that 48,000 coconut trees have been felled and destroyed in the Southern Province to prevent a deadly leap disease from spreading in the country’s coconut cultivations.

The Coconut Research Institute has named the disease as Weligama Coconut Leaf Wilt Disease (WCWLD). It is spreading in the areas of Weligama, Midigama, Denipitiya and Matara in Southern Province.

The leaf disease is estimated to affect six percent of the national coconut production in 2011.

Sri Lanka’s national coconut production is a total of 2.9 billion nuts and the current local demand is 2.0 billion nuts per year.

The Ministry of Agriculture says that the felled trees will be replaced with new cultivation.

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