Eden Research PLC (LON:EDEN) has revealed that its commercial partner, Eastman Chemical Company has received a 120-day "emergency use" authorisation from the Italian Ministry of Agriculture for Eden's nematicide formulation, marketed as Cedroz.
The AIM-listed biopesticide developer pointed out that such "emergency" authorisations are allowed by EU member states when local regulatory authorities judge that they are needed in the local market in order to meet the requirements of growers in the absence of suitable commercially-available alternatives.
READ: Eden Research sees revenues jump as product sales leap 112%, helping it swing to an adjusted operating profit
It added that during this period, Italy and other member states will continue to process Eastman's request for the authorised use and sale of Cedroz following earlier authorisation by Malta.
Cedroz is an innovative and sustainable solution designed to fight plant parasitic nematodes, pests that are known to cause severe damage to crops globally in both open field and greenhouse horticulture, resulting in significant yield losses and increasing growers' costs.
As previously announced, Malta has recently authorised the use of Cedroz on a wide range of crops, including cucumbers, courgettes, melons, aubergine, peppers, tomatoes and strawberries marking the initial authorisation for Cedroz in the EU.
Following the authorisation by Malta, the concerned Member States must grant their individual approvals for the sale and use of Cedroz within their jurisdictions.
Approvals pending in EU
The pending approvals will cover Spain and Italy, for outdoor uses and will also cover France, Belgium, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, as well as Spain and Italy, for professional greenhouse uses.
Once approved, Cedroz will be the first of Eden's formulations to be sold and used in the UK, where the company is headquartered.
Sean Smith, Chief Executive Officer of Eden, said: "Following Eden's initial investment in the formulation and patent protection of this important product, Eastman has invested significant resource over the past three years in the further development of Cedroz, and it is pleasing to see our collective efforts coming to fruition.”
He added: “There is significant and increasing demand for biopesticides as alternatives to conventional pesticide treatments due to their health and environmental safety profiles.
“We are looking forward to working with Eastman to capitalise on this growing demand and helping them to launch Cedroz in a number of new territories, including the UK.”
In a note to clients, analysts at ‘house’ broker Shore Capital said: “Whilst we await further pending approvals for Cedroz across Spain, Italy (aside from the 120-day derogation), France, Belgium, the Netherlands and the United Kingdom, we believe Eden is well positioned to take advantage of and capitalise on opportunities given the change in market dynamics, thus driving increased shareholder value.”
Shore Capital noted that its base-case scenario provides a fair value of 24.8p – around 132% upside.
In afternoon trading, shares in Eden Research were 2.4% higher at 10.85p.
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