Colombia approves first bio-herbicide
Apr. 1, 2020
Although biopesticides are widely known in the global market, there has been few developments in this area, which currently represent between 5% and 7% of the sector worldwide, but its growth is exponential.
The ban on the use of the herbicide, paraquat, in many countries and its restriction in others due to the issues it causes to public and environmental health indicates that its application is quite risky. Likewise, the current global debate regarding glyphosate , due to its harmful effects on human health and its residual presence to various environments and in processed food, resulted in its prohibition and restricted use in over 17 countries, a situation that fueled large-scale research and development in bioherbicides.
Colombia and other Latin American countries share the same problem. To face this need, Agrogreen USA and Novag SAS joined forces several years ago in the research, synthesis and development of the bioherbicide, EMERION® 7700.
This is why the Colombian Agriculture and Livestock Institute (ICA) approved Novag SAS and its biological herbicide, EMERION® 7700, which is the first bioherbicide registered in Colombia and Latin America.
EMERION® 7700 is a state-of-the art technology and a natural biodegradable product that allows cleaner and more environmentally friendly agricultural activity, therefore, responding to the need for ecological and sustainable agriculture.
With this decision, Colombia become the first country in the region to obtain registration for the import, marketing and use of fatty acid-based bioherbicides, following the example of European countries and the United States, which have been using them for years successfully in both weed eradication and land preparation in organic and conventional agriculture.
EMERION® 7700 acts differently from traditional agrochemicals. It moves through the cuticle and cell membranes and lowers the internal pH of plant cells, then minutes later it causes cell membranes to malfunction. Over the next few minutes, cellular ATP and glucose-6-phosphate stores decrease, and there is evidence of membrane dysfunction that eventually leads to cellular leakage, collapse and tissue desiccation. This process visibly affects green tissue in leaves, through the rapid effects of burning, defoliation and eventual destruction of the weed.
The bioherbicide can be used in areas close to rivers and other water sources and communities with fewer risks to human health and less impact on terrestrial and aquatic ecosystems. Likewise, EMERION® 7700, due to its rapid biodegradation, is a better option for managing pesticide residue in exported fruits, such as Hass avocado, bananas and coffee while complying with international standards.
Colombian researcher Dra. Lenda Nieto Illigue, Msc Plant Phytopathology and specialist in agricultural issues, stated that bioherbicides, being biodegradable products, are fast-acting and safe to human health and natural ecosystems. They are also friendly to pollinating insects, do not spread to other areas, and, due to their physical and chemical properties, have low volatility and can be used in aerial spraying, making them alternatives that can be used against current problems caused by non-selective chemical herbicides, such as glyphosate.
According to Carlos Eduardo Guzmán Suárez (Director of AgroGreen Latin America and Delegate of the Bioherbicides AgroGreen USA-NOVAG SAS Project), as part of its business plan, the company has invested US$10 million, of which $3 million has been allocated to research, laboratory tests and field analysis on its effectiveness carried out over the last five years. “During the first phase of implementation, we will be able to launch the bioherbicide in Mexico, Ecuador, Peru, Chile and the Dominican Republic, and later in other Latin American countries," Suárez said.
According to the study conducted by Verified Market Research, the bioherbicide market was valued at $972.5 million in 2018 and is projected to reach a value of $2538 million by 2026. The United States, Canada, Australia, France, Germany and other countries in Europe account for the highest growth, due to the growing demand for organic crops and existing controversies regarding the use and prohibition of the conventional synthetic herbicides already mentioned.
The original Spanish version of this piece is from AGRONEGOCIOS.
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