Tomato – Heliothis/Tomato budworm (𝘏𝘦𝘭𝘪𝘤𝘰𝘷𝘦𝘳𝘱𝘢 spp.)

Crop:         Tomato
Insect(s): Heliothis/Tomato budworm (Helicoverpa spp.)


  1. Monitor pest levels and do not spray unless pest thresholds are reached.
  2. Use an integrated pest control approach where both chemical and non-chemical measures are adopted as part of the overall strategy. Examples are the use of predators/parasites and relevant cultural practices (crop hygiene, rotation of planted areas, and strategic time of planting).
  3. Seek local advice on pest incidence and the risk of resistance development from insecticide programs used to control heliothis in other crops or to control other pests.
  4. When using insecticides/miticides to control other pests on tomato, consider the chemical group in relation to contributing to resistance development of
  5. Avoid using insecticides from the same chemical group against consecutive generations of Helicoverpa or other pests, as this will increase the selection pressure. This does not apply to Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) or Nucleopolyhedroviruses (NPV) products, as they are considered to have a lower resistance risk. To encourage beneficial insects, use Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) or Nucleopolyhedroviruses (NPV) sprays and avoid broad spectrum insecticides where possible, particularly early to mid-crop cycle.
  6. Do not re-spray a crop in the same season where a failure (which is known or unknown) has occurred using the same insecticide or other active ingredient from the same chemical group.
  7. The Modes of Action (Groups) and registered insecticides for control of Heliothis/Tomato budworm (Helicoverpa spp.) are listed below:
MoA Group Chemical sub-group Active ingredient Delivery method No. applications permitted per crop per season
1A Carbamates methomyl (eg. Lannate® L), thiodicarb (eg. Larvin®) Foliar not specified
3A Pyrethroids synthetic pyrethroids (various – eg. Dominex® Duo, Karate® Zeon, Sumi-alpha® Flex, Trojan®) Foliar not specified
5 Spinosyns spinetoram (Success® Neo), spinosad (eg. Entrust®) Foliar 4
6 Avermectins emamectin benzoate (eg. Proclaim® Opti) Foliar 4
11A Bacillus thuringiensis B.thuringiensis subsp. kurstaki (eg. Dipel®) Foliar not specified
18 Diacylhydrazines methoxyfenozide (eg. Prodigy®) Foliar not specified
22A Oxadiazines indoxacarb (eg. Avatar® eVo) Foliar 3 and no more than 2 consecutive applications
22A + 15 Oxadiazines + benzoylureas indoxacarb + novaluron (Plemax®) Foliar 3 and no more than 2 consecutive applications
28 Diamides chlorantraniliprole (eg. Coragen®), flubendiamide (eg. Belt®) Foliar 3 and no more than 2 consecutive applications (including mixtures of chlorantraniliprole and thiamethoxam)
28 Diamides cyantraniliprole (Benevia®) Foliar 2
28 + 12A Diamides + diafenthiuron cyantraniliprole + diafenthiuron (Minecto Forte®) Foliar 2
28 + 4A Diamides + neonicotinoids chlorantraniliprole + thiamethoxam (Durivo® ) Soil 1
31 Nucleopolyhedrovirus NPV of H.zea or H.armigera (eg. Gemstar®, Vivus® Max) Foliar not specified
UN Clitoria ternatea extract clitoria ternatea extract (Sero-X) Foliar not specified

Notes regarding the application of insecticides:

  1. To ensure the most effective control of the pest:
  2. Product labels should at all times be carefully read and adhered to;
  3. Full recommended rates of registered insecticides should always be used; and

Ensure good coverage of the target area to maximise contact.

Content last updated: June 26, 2024

CropLife Australia’s Resistance Management Strategies provide a guide for crop protection product rotation through product groups. The strategies are a useful tool that supports farmers’ adoption of resistance management. All crop protection products must be handled and applied strictly as specified on the product label or APVMA permits.

These Resistance Management Strategies do not replace product labels. They are a guide only and do not endorse particular products, groups of products or cultural methods in terms of their performance. It is important to check with the Australian regulator’s (APVMA) product database for contemporary information on products and active constituents. The database can be sourced through

The information given in this strategy is provided in good faith and without any liability for loss or damage suffered as a result of its application and use. Advice given in this strategy is valid as at 26 June 2024. All previous versions of this strategy are now invalid.