Growers are seeking viable alternatives to the limited availability and price of certain crop protection and fertilizer products. One option is biologicals. Increasing numbers of biological products are offering benefits to growers in the areas of crop protection and soil fertility. Matthew Pye, FMC’s Biologicals Subject Matter Expert, says that using biological products can be easy and effective. It is about choosing the right product, and the right practice. Timing is also important. Pye says timing is knowing when to place them out so they don’t get out of control to the point where they exceed the product’s capabilities.
Biological crop protection and soil fertility products continue hitting the market. Industry analysis predicts a 12% rise in the biological industry over 10 years. To increase effectiveness, biologicals are often combined with synthetic chemicals.
Pye states that many of these products can be planted at planting and provide benefits for the entire season. They are used to plant the seeds in the furrow. They are root colonizers and can be used all year, he explained, adding that studies have shown improved plant health through the use of biological products.
Major agricultural companies, such as Bayer, Syngenta and BASF, Monsanto and DOW, are working to bring new technology to the market. These new products and practices are being developed because of the growing demand for safe food. Biological products may be more popular due to the current high prices of fertilizer and shortages of certain crop chemicals.