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Bioline obtains bronze medal at SIVAL Innovation 2021

Bioline obtains bronze medal at SIVAL Innovation 2021 with T-PROTECT® © Bioline Agrosciences

© Bioline Agrosciences


The innovative system for releasing auxiliary insects T-PROTECT®, developed by Bioline Agrosciences, has obtained the bronze medal in the SIVAL Innovation competition, held at the SIVAL fair in Angers (France).

After winning a bronze SIVAL in 2020 with PREDAFIX®, a solution to facilitate the installation of predatory mites, this year, the innovative nature of the T-Protect® delivery system has allowed Bioline Agrosciences to obtain another bronze medal at this major event.

The use of auxiliary insects is key in the implementation of biological control. However, in certain types of crops or at certain stages of their development, the management of these macro-organisms can be difficult or even impossible. Therefore, the development of innovative delivery systems is essential to ensure the deployment of biological control on a large scale and in a maximum of different crops.

In some cases, the auxiliary insect release systems, and in particular the innovative trichogramma release systems, must be placed in the soil to ensure good distribution in the crop. However, in midsummer, these release systems can be exposed directly to the sun and also to the heat that radiates from the soil, reaching temperatures that can be lethal to auxiliary insects in just a few minutes. Furthermore, in the case of some crops with poor foliar development or in the case of early application of protection solutions, the leaves may insufficiently protect the soil from the sun.

For this reason, the Bioline Agrosciences R&D department has developed the T-PROTECT® technology, a release system called a “diffuser”, which consists of a fully biodegradable protective cover that, in turn, acts as a refrigeration system.

These two properties provide optimal protection for the auxiliary insect. On the one hand, the diffuser ensures a gradual release of insects and is the first barrier of protection against heat, humidity, rain, and predatory insects, such as ants. The second level of protection is the cover. This case is an ingenious cardboard system that protects the diffuser from both direct sunlight and radiation from the ground, establishing a certain distance between the diffuser and the ground, so that air can easily circulate to cool it effectively.

T-Protect® technology ensures a level of efficiency equivalent to traditional release systems even in difficult sun situations, but with clear direct benefits:

  • Extension of the use of biological control solutions to other crops.
  • Possibility of using these solutions at the beginning of the season for preventive actions.
  • Possibility of increasing the performance of the site, mechanizing the application of biological control solutions.
  • Provision of a delayed release technology by controlling the emergence of the parasitoid in several stages. This allows the action to be prolonged, providing effective control during all flights and / or generations of the target pest.

With 700 exhibitors and 26,000 professional visitors a year in Angers, SIVAL is the trade fair in France that presents a complete offer of equipment and services for all plant productions: arboriculture, vegetable crops, seeds, viticulture, horticulture, medicinal and aromatic plants.

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REYBANPAC recognised for good agricultural practices

REYBANPAC recognised for good agricultural practices © REYBANPAC


During Fruit Logistica 2020, Reybanpac received recognition from Bayer Ecuador for the implementation of good agricultural practices in the banana sector. In recent years, Reybanpac has been incorporating biofungicides into its production processes as part of its environmental care commitment. Biofungicides are an alternative form of phytosanitary control that can reduce chemical use in preventing diseases such as sigatoka.

Reybanpac is a pioneer in the banana industry in applying this type of product for the sustainable management of pests and diseases. “We are honoured by this recognition, which motivates us to continue constantly and proactively developing. We believe in the application of new techniques that contribute to our objectives of productivity and socio-environmental responsibility. As a company, we adapt to changes and are prepared to move forward with the new market trends,” said CEO Vicente Wong.

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Bioline Iberia biofactory celebrates first anniversary

Bioline Iberia biofactory celebrates first anniversary

It was a year ago that the Bioline Iberia’s biofactory opened in Santa María del Águila, El Ejido. The “biofactory” is the result of an alliance between Biocolor and Bioline Agrosciences. It is an innovative and technological project on more than 4,000 square metres of cutting-edge bio-solutions to meet the field’s needs.

For its general manager, María José Pardo, one of the main reasons for its success in this first year has been “having a young, dynamic team eager to bring the latest advances in biocontrol to farmers and clients of Bioline Iberia and achieve a local production of predators in the peninsular’s biological fight”.

Another important success in this intense one-year journey has been the implementation of integrated production programmes such as Trichogramma achaeae for the control of Tuta Absoluta in tomato, where Bioline Iberia is the world leader in its production.

Bioline Iberia has innovative release systems such as blister packs for the controlled release of parasites and predators as well as different formats for Swirskii such as the bugline and stick envelopes.

Finally, without a doubt, what has been the hallmark of Bioline Iberia is its Bioline Academy  training centre, attended by hundreds of farmers and technicians who have seen first-hand the bio-factory itself. Even during these times of confinement due to the COVID-19 crisis, news has continued to reach farmers and technicians through short training videos.

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Morocco’s tomato growers discover solution to PepMV

Biobetter Maroc, the Biobest Group company serving the Moroccan market with pollination and biocontrol solutions, has an agreement with DCM to distribute its PMV®-01 vaccine.

On April 20, Biobetter Maroc organised a well-attended seminar in Agadir to present PMV®-01, a vaccine against Pepino mosaic virus (PepMV).

With more than 120 participants, local growers and sector representatives demonstrated their strong interest in a solution against this virus that is wreaking havoc on their tomato crops.

In a press release, Biobest said crop losses are particularly high during winter, when success in export markets is crucial.

Biobetter Maroc, the Biobest Group company serving the Moroccan market with pollination and biocontrol solutions, entered into an agreement with DCM (known for its natural and organic-based fertilizers and other plant nutrition products) in 2014 to distribute its PMV®-01 vaccine.

Backed by DCM’s strong registration file and additional local trials, the product was officially registered in Morocco in 2015.

During the previous tomato season the product and its application strategy were commercially validated on 400 ha of commercial crop.

At the seminar, Dr. Inge Hanssen from DCM explained the scientific background to the Pepino mosaic virus and the mechanisms behind plant vaccination.

She also explained the typical symptoms and impact on the crop.

”A sampling program conducted in collaboration with Biobetter Maroc, demonstrated widespread presence of aggressive PepMV isolates. All isolates sampled in Morocco belonged to the Chilean strain (CH2),” Hanssen said.

The development of the PMV®-01 vaccine, field results in various countries and full details of the vaccination strategy, applied under Moroccan crop conditions were also presented, by Thijs De Langhe from DCM and Julien Mourrut-Salesse from Biobest, respectively

Biobetter Maroc general manager Karim Jerate said the tomato industry is an important sector of the Moroccan economy.

“We’re pleased to provide a solution that will give our local growers a competitive edge to sustain growth in export markets. The field experience obtained during this tomato season was totally convincing.

“The product nicely complements our existing product range in pollination and biological control. Our team is fully prepared to support the growers that wish to apply our solutions.

“With PMV®-01 we’re not just selling a product but we’re also supporting the implementation of a carefully designed vaccination strategy. We’re pleased with the many questions and interest received during the seminar and will now be dedicating ourselves to providing each grower with full details,” Jerate said.

See the video presentation illustrating the PMV®-01 vaccination strategy which was shown at the seminar:



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Rising tide in biocontrol demand, solutions

Industry association IBMA gains members as more conventional chemical companies also provide biocontrol products

Industry association IBMA gains members as more conventional chemical companies also provide biocontrol products

About half of all substances currently awaiting EU registration as agrochemicals are biological, estimates International Biocontrol Manufacturers’ Association (IBMA) executive director David Cary. That hints at the big growth ahead for biocontrol, he said, especially as now only about 5% of agrochemicals on the market are biological. “I think that shows there’s a change and in the future you can rely more on these products as more of them will be available.”

Big players getting into biocontrol

The worldwide association of biocontrol industries producing microorganisms, macroorganisms, semiochemicals and natural pesticides for plant protection and public health, the IBMA is also seeing an interesting change in its membership.

Cary said most of the traditional agrochemical players are now also involved in biocontrol technology, joining what have traditionally been mainly small and medium-size enterprises. ”We’ve had a big influx of these large companies join the association as members so it’s nice mix of small and big companies now.”

Cary said the diversity is welcome because the kinds of products developed and brought to the market differ between big and small companies. Both farmers and consumers stand to benefit from having wider choice in products promoting sustainable food production, he said.

Survey to calibrate biocontrol sector size, growth areas

While biocontrol is estimated to form only about 5% of the overall agrochemical market, Cary said the IBMA’s membership has been growing at about 15-20% per annum, a rate some analysts say mirrors the growth in farm usage levels of biocontrol products. But exactly where that growth is occurring and with what kinds of products is hard to pinpoint.

That’s why one of the IBMA’s plans for the first quarter of this year is a survey of its members. “We need to have some data for the industry because at the moment we rely on other sources’ figures and there are some discrepancies there. We’d like to have a breakdown to know which segments are growing fastest and in which countries,” he said.

Joint IBMA – Copa-Cogeca push to give farmers more biocontrol choices

A highlight of 2014 was a IBMA’a agreement with Copa-Cogeca, the European farmers’ lobby group, to work together to accelerate the development and use of biocontrol tools for farmers. Under one of the three pillars of this agreement they will work with EU member states and the European Commission to “make some changes in the incentives and procedures for the registration of low risk substances and products (many of which involve biocontrol) so they come to the market faster,” Cary said. Expediting registration is a “huge area that we’ll be concentrating on for 2015.” 

Another pillar focuses on making more biocontrol products available to growers for minor uses and specialty crops, which is particularly an issue in Europe. A third pillar will see the two organisations cooperate to develop some targeted solutions for priority pests and diseases. This will initially focused on pilot crop systems including for bell peppers, grapes, cucumbers, leafy vegetables, soft fruit, carrots and onions. 




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Biobest presents an innovative hive

TECH biobest Bart Sosef

“We are happy that there is more and more demand for crop bio-protection from the Middle East countries, South Asia and China,” said Kris Fivez, Sales Manager of Biobest company. “We see interest from Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan and Georgia, too, while Europe and America are already our loyal clients, and people in other regions are also becoming more concerned about food safety and integrated production.” At Fruit Logistica Fair, Biobest presented one of its innovations, a special bumblebee hive. Its use allows an increase in the crop yield of various fruit trees, such as kiwi and pear trees. “The working principle of our new hive is the following: there is a special dispenser inside which pollen is stored; as it leave the hive, a bumblebee comes through the dispenser tray and takes pollen with it,” explained Herman Van Mellaert, director of business development. “Thus, fruit trees which have less pollination due to lower temperatures or rain will receive additional pollination, and the yield will be greater, the fruit size bigger.”
Biobest manufactures and sells products for biological pollination and pest control. With 25 years experience, it is a pioneer in biological crop protection sector. The company has opened subsidiaries in 10 countries around the world and Biobest exports its products to 55 countries, helping local farmers reach their economic and ecological goals. “We care about the preservation of local fauna”, Van Mellaert stressed. “If possible, we breed local species of bumblebees. This is done in Argentina and in some other countries too.”

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Syngenta Bioline responds to market developments


Syngenta Bioline’s Head of Development Richard GreatRex signals the retail sector’s drive towards reduced or zero residues in products as one of the major market influences today. “We see a move towards a preference for integrated pest management and away from purely chemical approaches.” Mainly focussing on cut flowers and covered crops, Syngenta Bioline has done a lot of work in soft fruit crops in recent years. “More and more soft fruits are grown under protection to extend the season and this encourages pest problems. “Growers also experience resistance problems with some of the chemical solutions and other agents restrict them in terms of re-entry and pre-harvest limitations during the harvest season. From those aspects, again the need for integrated pest control arises. And this is what Syngenta Bioline wants to offer growers: the best combined solution.
Traditionally, Syngenta Bioline has held a strong position in the invertebrate biocontrol agents for protected salad vegetables and this is still an area of many innovations. A new product based on the predator mite Montdorensis is currently being developed.  The mite is used to control thrips and whitefly in several crops such as cucumber, aubergine, pepper or gerbera.  “We recently made a breakthrough in the production system allowing us to produce this product in commercial numbers.” The product is on the market in the Netherlands already and currently going through the registration process in France and Spain too. Richard GreatRex signals that the registration process is a difficult one, but once handled with a rational approach, by no means an impossible one. MW

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Koppert Biological Systems: Total solution provider

BIO biocntrol KOPPERT interview (1)

“Yes, Koppert Biological Systems is growing” says Peter Maes, Marketing and Sales Director for Europe. Growth is seen in three directions. There is geographical expansion to the point that over half of Koppert’s sales are outside Europe. Peter Maes: “Development of the new areas carries through enormously.” Brazil, Russia, the Middle East, South America and India are mentioned as substantial growth areas.  Yosef Ouhlous, general manager for the Middle East and Africa region, explains that expansion in the new areas is driven by market demand, sometimes because the biological solutions are simply more effective and mostly because the sector is aware that this is the best method of crop protection.
Koppert is also growing in applications by taking the step from greenhouse growers to open-air (open field) production. Peter Maes: “We are in a transition period, coming from biological crop protection with a focus on insects and now moving towards the position of total solution provider. From the covered crops we see more and more solutions emerging for raw crops as well.” This calls for a new way of thinking. “It’s a matter of perception; where the focus used to be on problem solving, we now strive to prevent the problem from occurring.” Furthermore growth comes from new products.  In the total package that Koppert offers, prevention plays a key role. With their NatuGro system, Koppert starts with the soil. It uses biostimulants and useful micro-organisms to stimulate the growth of useful bacteria and fungi in the root zone of the plant. This results in disease suppression. Peter Maes: “We aim for plants with maximum resistance, so that minimum intervention is needed.”  


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Biobest keeps on innovating

BIO biocontrol BIOBEST flying doctors nest & Nutrimite (2)

“We see a tendency towards biological solutions for both covered and open crops” says Biobest’s R&D director Felix Wäckers. “Solutions for open crops need a different approach and other tools to be able to cope. It is a challenge to keep the biological products in the crop.” One way of boosting the predatory mites is to apply a food supplement. Biobest, pioneering in biological pollination and pest control, recently introduced Nutrimite for ornamental crops – constituting a breakthrough in biological solutions for roses – and it has potential for other crops. Another Biobest innovation is the Dyna-Mite. Felix Wäckers: “It’s a mite that is very dynamic and mobile in the crop. It can rapidly develop a population to combat thrips, white fly or red spider.” This product also has potential for application in open fields or orchards.  Biobest, active in biological solutions for over 25 years, states that the ‘flying doctors’ concept they introduced last year is very successful. Felix Wäckers: “New researchers are appointed to do more research into the use of microbiological products for both covered crops and open field production. Induced resistance is another field in which Biobest sees possibilities. Felix Wäckers: “It is a way to enhance the plant’s potential to defend itself. A treatment is applied to switch on the resistance and prevent diseases from happening.”