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Portento®, the advanced biofungicide with a preventive and curative effect on Venturia spp. (apple scab)qrcode

Mar. 21, 2024

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Mar. 21, 2024

Rovensa Next
Spain  Spain

Apple scab is a common fungal disease that affects apple trees. It is caused by the fungus Venturia inaequalis. This pathology can lead to significant damage to apple trees and a reduction in fruit quality and yield if left untreated. 

Here are some key points about apple scab: 

  1. Apple scab primarily affects the leaves, fruits, and sometimes the twigs of apple trees. Symptoms usually appear in the spring as olive-green to black spots on leaves and fruit. These damages may have a velvety or fuzzy appearance and can expand, causing distortion and premature leaf drop. On fruits, scab injury is typically dark, rough, and sunken, reducing their market value.

  2. The fungus overwinters in infected leaves on the ground or in branch wounds. In spring, during periods of wet weather, fungal spores are released and spread by wind and rain to nearby apple trees. These spores infect newly emerging leaves and fruits. The disease cycle repeats throughout the growing season, with multiple generations of spores being produced.

  3. Apple scab thrives in cool, humid conditions. Rainy weather during the spring and early summer provides ideal conditions for the spread of the fungus. Additionally, dense tree canopies that limit air circulation can promote the development of apple scab by creating a moist environment.

  4. Management and Control: Cultural practices and chemical treatments can help manage apple scab. These include:

    1. Remove and destroy fallen leaves and fruits to reduce the source of infection.

    2. Pruning trees to improve air circulation and sunlight penetration, which can help reduce humidity and inhibit fungal growth.

    3. Apply fungicides preventatively to protect susceptible plant parts from infection. Several fungicides are available for controlling apple scab, but proper timing and application are crucial for effective control.

    4. Planting apple tree varieties that are resistant to apple scab can be an effective long-term strategy for managing the disease.

  5. Economic Impact: Apple scab can cause significant economic losses for commercial apple growers due to reduced fruit quality and yield. Timely treatment significantly reduces the quality and yield losses caused by the disease, and even the use of preventative treatments reduces the incidence or severity of the infection.

Biological Controls: 

Some beneficial microorganisms and fungi have been studied for their potential to control or supress apple scab. These biological management work by competing with the pathogen for resources or by directly inhibiting its growth. 

For example, certain strains of the fungus Trichoderma spp. have shown promise in suppressing apple scab when applied to the soil or foliage. 


Several organic fungicides are approved for use in organic apple production. These biofungicides are derived from natural sources and have minimal impact on the environment. 

Copper-based fungicides, such as copper sulfate or copper hydroxide, are commonly used in integrated pest management programmes for controlling apple scab. However, excessive or repeated use of copper can lead to copper buildup in the soil, potentially causing toxicity to soil organisms. 

Sulfur-based fungicides are another option for organic growers. Sulfur works by inhibiting fungal spore germination and is effective against apple scab when applied preventatively. 

Rotational Strategies: 

Rotating different biofungicides with different modes of action can help prevent the development of resistance in the apple scab population. 

Additionally, alternating between different cultural practices, such as varying pruning methods or intercropping with other plants, can disrupt the apple scab’s life cycle and reduce disease pressure. 

Sustainable apple production strategies require a holistic approach to pest and disease management that emphasises soil health, biodiversity, and ecological balance. While these methods may require more labour and careful planning than conventional methods, they offer growers a way to produce high quality apples while minimising reliance on synthetic inputs. 



Currently, apple scab is widespread due to the sensitivity of the cultivated varieties and favorable climatic conditions. To combat this disease, it is necessary to follow a preventive strategy along with its respective treatment. 

Rovensa Next's product Portento® is a biological fungicide based on a new generation strain of Bacillus subtilis. It possesses both preventive and curative action against fungi, providing protection against disease proliferation in plants and effectively controlling Venturia inaequalis in pome fruits, powdery mildew in cucurbits, and downy mildew in lettuce. 

Furthermore, it’s worth noting that Portento® has low application doses and is suitable for zero-residue strategies. It doesn’t require special storage conditions and is compatible with 95% of copper and sulfur-based products. 

Source: Rovensa Next


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