Eco-Friendly Biofungicides Await EPA Nod for US Farms

In a significant development for sustainable agriculture, Aphea.Bio, a pioneer in microbial solutions, has recently announced the submission of its first biofungicides, VALORIA and VIRTUOSA, for federal approval by the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The introduction of these biofungicides represents a promising step forward for farmers seeking environmentally friendly alternatives to combat diseases in wheat, fruits, and vegetables.

Harnessing the Power of Microorganisms

Aphea.Bio’s innovative APEXbio technology platform stands at the core of this advancement. This high-throughput R&D platform is adept at rapidly screening thousands of naturally-occurring microorganisms, propelling the creation of the next generation of biostimulants and biocontrol products. VALORIA and VIRTUOSA, derived from this unique technology, are specifically tailored for foliar application. VALORIA is designed to protect wheat crops, while VIRTUOSA targets a range of fruit and vegetable diseases.

Both biofungicides are based on a Streptomyces strain, a group of soil-dwelling bacteria known for their prolific production of antibiotics. They offer several advantageous features that make them particularly attractive to farmers. These include ease of use, a two-year shelf life at ambient temperatures, and compatibility with existing agricultural chemicals, allowing them to be seamlessly integrated into current farming practices.

Broad-Spectrum Disease Protection

The biofungicides have been engineered to be effective against a broad spectrum of diseases. VALORIA provides wheat crops with protection against head blight, yellow rust, leaf blotch, and powdery mildew. VIRTUOSA, on the other hand, safeguards fruit and vegetable crops from threats like grey mold and powdery mildew.

Extensive field testing over three years, conducted by Aphea.Bio and validated by external partners, has demonstrated the consistent and robust performance of these biofungicides. They have proven effective both as standalone solutions and within Integrated Pest Management (IPM) systems. In independent trials conducted by reputable organizations, VIRTUOSA has even outperformed competitor biofungicides, establishing both VALORIA and VIRTUOSA as reliable options for growers looking to either replace or supplement their standard pest management practices.

Safety and Environmental Considerations

All studies conducted to date affirm that the microbial strain used in VALORIA and VIRTUOSA has a very low risk profile, showing no adverse effects in toxicity studies and no identified ecotoxicological risks. This safety profile is crucial in the push for more sustainable farming methods that do not compromise the health of consumers or the environment.

Isabel Vercauteren, CEO of Aphea.Bio, expressed her enthusiasm about the submission: “We are excited to submit our first biofungicides VALORIA and VIRTUOSA, for EPA registration. This marks a significant milestone, demonstrating the versatility and efficacy of our technology platform APEXbio in delivering not only biostimulants but also biocontrol solutions. We are looking forward to the introduction of more innovative biocontrol products across many crops and countries in the coming years.”

The Path Forward

While the products await EPA registration, Aphea.Bio is not resting on its laurels. The company plans to proceed with international registrations, filing application submissions in the European Union and California. The ongoing commitment to leveraging beneficial microorganisms for crop growth is a testament to the company’s dedication to advancing sustainable agricultural practices.

As the agricultural community eagerly awaits the outcome of the regulatory review process, the potential impact of VALORIA and VIRTUOSA on the market is palpable. These biofungicides could soon provide farmers with powerful tools to protect their crops while adhering to the principles of sustainability and environmental stewardship.

Aphea.Bio will be joining industry professionals in London as a Silver Partner, offering an opportunity for attendees to connect with the team and learn more about their groundbreaking work. As the agricultural sector continues to evolve, the role of companies like Aphea.Bio in fostering a more sustainable future becomes increasingly vital.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Scroll to Top