Biologicals are part of the solution to secure global food supply

Bayer CropScience highlighted the important role biological crop protection products can play to help secure global food supply at the Annual Biocontrol Industry Meeting in Basel, Switzerland, from October 19 to 21, 2015. Several hundreds of representatives from companies and organizations worldwide meet once a year at this industry conference to exchange about trends and new developments in the area of biologicals.
“We must work together closely to enable the millions of farmers around the world to increase food production using innovative biological plant protection products to meet the growing needs of our hungry planet,” said Ashish Malik, Head of Global Marketing Biologicals at Bayer CropScience. 



“Bayer is committed to building partnerships with academia, governments, the private sector and civil society that will enable farmers to have better access to inputs like biologicals, knowledge and technologies,” added Malik. He pointed out that Bayer contributes to the new Sustainable Development Goals which were recently adapted by the United Nations. “We contribute to goal 2 ‘Zero Hunger’ which can only be achieved with increased agricultural productivity –through science and innovation in crop protection solutions that include biologicals.” 

From the company’s point of view, multidisciplinary collaboration is needed in order to drive future growth of biologicals in a holistically understood way. Biologicals based on beneficial bacterial or fungal microorganisms as well as biochemicals such as plant extracts and semiochemicals help to ensure the healthy growth of crops. They combat key insect pests and diseases, increase yield and also help plants to tolerate stress conditions such as heat, drought or salinity. 

Bayer is convinced that combining cost-effective and environment-friendly biologicals with other agricultural inputs and practices in Integrated Crop Management (ICM) will lead to viable and sustainable agriculture. 

Requiem™ improves programs to combat sucking pests in fruits and vegetables

In his presentation, Gilles Chevallier, Global Product Management Biological Insecticides at Bayer CropScience, focused on the benefits of integrated solutions for the production of fruits and vegetables and introduced novel biological products. “Requiem™ is Bayer’s latest innovation in the field of biological insecticides,” Gilles Chevallier pointed out. “It is effective against sucking pests, especially thrips, whiteflies and mites, leading to better-quality produces and higher marketability.” 

In August, Bayer reached an important milestone towards the market introduction of Requiem™ in Europe. Its active ingredient Terpenoid Blend QRD 460 was approved by the European Commission. First registrations of Requiem™ are expected in some European countries before the end of 2016. Market launch is planned for 2017.

Reliable nematode control with BioAct™ and Velum™ Prime 

BioAct™ products containing the natural active substance Purpureocillium lilacinum strain 251 are increasingly used against economically important plant parasitic nematodes. They can be applied with flexibility throughout the cropping cycle, using irrigation systems including drip, trickle, microsprinklers or drench applications. 

In combination with other crop protection products like the new nematicide Velum™ Prime (active ingredient fluopyram), BioAct™ provides an innovative and integrated approach to control nematodes in fruit & vegetable crops. Central American field trials of this combination have shown good efficacy levels in perennial crops like bananas, which led to healthier banana plants and increased bunch weight. An additional benefit for the grower and the food value chain is that together BioAct™ & Velum™ Prime can replace older or phased-out products and soil fumigants.

Serenade™ – a powerful tool to protect food crops against fungal diseases

Another cornerstone of Bayer CropScience’s Crop Protection portfolio is the biological fungicide Serenade™. It is based on the unique Bacillus subtilis strain QST 713, a beneficial soil bacterium. Serenade™ protects a wide range of fruit and vegetable crops in the field and greenhouse. Applied as a foliar spray, Serenade™ combats diseases such as botrytis, powdery mildew and sclerotinia. As soil treatment, it directly attacks pythium, rhizoctonia, fusarium and some strains of phytophthora. 

Used in rotation or tank-mix with other Bayer fungicides, Serenade™ is a powerful tool against the development of fungicide resistance. Furthermore, it is an excellent root colonizer and has been shown to improve plant health and root structure even in the absence of disease.

For more information, visit www.bayercropscience.com

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