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bumblebees to deliver crop protection:
US: BVT starts with large-scale trial in Florida berriesBee Vectoring Technologies announced that it has entered into formal agreements with several leading US strawberry growers to conduct large-scale commercial demonstrations of its proprietary growing system. The demonstrations will begin this month in Florida.
BVT has developed and owns patent-pending bee vectoring technology (consisting of a proprietary tray dispenser containing a unique carrier agent) that is designed to harmlessly utilize commercially reared bumblebees as natural delivery mechanisms for a variety of powdered mixtures comprised of organic compounds that inhibit or eliminate common crop diseases, while at the same time stimulating and enhancing the same crops. This unique and proprietary process facilitates a targeted delivery of crop controls using the simple process of bee pollination to replace traditional crop spraying, resulting in better yield, organic product and less impact on the environment without the use of water or disruptions to labour.
"The large-scale commercial demos, which have now been secured with key growers, represent the next stage in the well-established path to commercialization that forms the basis of any major adoption of new on-farm technology," stated Ashish Malik, CEO of BVT. "We expect these latest demos to further solidify demand for our technology from highly influential growers who, combined, control a significant percentage of strawberry production in Florida. These demonstrations will continue in parallel to the ongoing regulatory approval process with the US EPA."
The commercial-scale demos have been secured based on the strength of the previous trial results and represent an opportunity for the farmers to see how the BVT system can be incorporated into their crop production practices on a commercial scale.
BVT previously announced that results from the replicated trials in the 2016 season on strawberries showed reductions in gray mold disease when the BVT system was used in conjunction with chemical fungicides by up to 40% compared to treatments when the fungicides were used alone. Gray mold is a common and costly disease in strawberries and causes the fruit to rot and reduces the shelf life of the berries. The results further showed increases in marketable yield up to 30% with the BVT delivery system.
The Company previously announced on August 29, 2016, its submission for regulatory approval of its biological fungicide BVT CR-7 with the US Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). Once these approvals are secured the Company will be able to capture full value for its technology and make claims about its efficacy in managing crop diseases.
Malik added "We have been incredibly pleased by, not only the commitment of these influential growers to use the BVT system on their farms but also their eagerness to prove the efficacy of the BVT system in helping their farms be more productive, profitable and sustainable. This also validates the strength of the data we have been able to generate with our own research trials with co-operators and key influencers."
Publication date: 1/11/2017
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