Novel biological controls for insect pests
- Companies interested in commercialising novel products for crop protection and Integrated Pest Management (IPM).
- Existing chemical businesses interested in diversified opportunities
- Investors interested in alternative crop protectant products
PLEASE NOTE the closing date for expressions of interest is 5.00pm AEST on Friday 6 AUGUST 2021
Industry challenge: Agriculture requires an increasing range of tools to manage pests in order to maintain yields and quality, satisfy consumer expectations and meet market requirements. Without pesticides the world would lose up to 50% of key food and fibre crops devastating global supply. Currently:
- pest control options are declining, in part due to insects developing resistance, and fewer replacement options are being provided
- increasing regulatory pressures and older chemistries may no longer comply with current health and environmental standards
- there is increasing pressure to reduce the use of chemicals in the production of food and agriculture generally.
Current opportunity: The current value of insecticides in Australia is over $8B pa. The number of new biological products registered globally has increased each year, and over the past two decades the growth in biologicals/biopesticides has outpaced that of crop protection chemicals.
The NSW Department of Primary Industries (NSWDPI) and the Cotton Research and Development Corporation (CRDC) through work undertaken by Dr Robert Mensah have demonstrated effective biological control of insect pests in cotton and is now seeking partners to commercialise the related novel IP and deliver this to industry.
The successful work focused on the development of non-chemical and natural chemical pest control tools based on fungal isolates and plant extracts. This approach can be used to complement beneficial insect activity against a range of pests. It will support Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs in cotton and other crops. Efficacy has been demonstrated against Helicoverpa spp., green mirids, silverleaf whitefly, green vegetable bugs, rutherglen bugs, fruit fly and mealy bugs. Efficacy against Fall Armyworm is currently being evaluated.
Potential other applications: There are opportunities for commercialisation in crops other than cotton.
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