Dec. 3, 2021
By Leonardo Gottems, reporter for AgroPages
The German multinational BASF announced the launch of its first bionematicide in Brazil, which received the trade name Votivo Prime.
The bionematicide is based on the bacterium Bacillus Firmus, which develops the root system and minimizes stresses on rice, soybeans, corn, wheat, and cotton.
The product, which focuses on seed treatment to control nematodes, is the result of at least ten years of development and 413 comparative test areas in various regions of Brazil. In the 2020-21 harvest, Votivo Prime achieved a performance of 3.8 sacks of soybeans per hectare.
“It is placed in the seed, and when it enters the soil and the first leaves and the root system begin to form, the bacteria also multiply by releasing rooting-inducing phytohormones. Then they start to form a kind of protective biofilm on the roots. These good bacteria mask the nematode's communication with the root, and they die. In addition, they produce substances that reduce nematode eggs,” explained Sérgio Abud, researcher and technology supervisor at Embrapa Cerrados and member of the Strategic Committee Soja Brasil (CESB).
According to BASF, the product is compatible with chemicals and other biological pesticides. It can also be used in the two-crop system: in soybeans and corn, reducing nematode populations throughout the seasons. It is also suitable for crops such as rice and peanuts.
“With 25 days of soybean emergence, the producer can already see the difference between areas with or without the bionematicide,” added the senior manager of Seed Treatment of Agricultural Solutions at BASF, Luis Henrique Feijó. According to him, the solution is available this harvest and is used with the already available seed with Brazilian distributors.
Nematodes are a silent problem in soybeans and can affect even the entire production of a crop. The main ones that affect the culture are gall formers (Meloidogyne spp.), cysts (Heterodera glycines), root lesions (Pratylenchus brachyurus), and reniform (Rotylenchulus reniformis). In addition to causing direct damage to soybean plants, injuries to the plant's roots are a gateway for other parasites that cause diseases that also impact productivity.
Abud explained, “There are many factors that limit productivity, such as pests, diseases, weeds, nematodes, and others that cause stress in the crop.”
One of the ways to ensure a strong initial start, according to him, is the seed treatment. In this phase, elements have been placed that help the plants and roots to start more powerfully. “The seed treatment acts in the initial control of soil pests, being the first stage of the producer's decision,” he said in conclusion.