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California farmers embrace Marrone Bio Innovations’ BioUnite pest control program

The company’s biological pesticides helps grape and almond growers ward off navel orangeworms, mites, brownrot and other insects

Grape cultivation
The California company provides bio-based pest management and plant health products

Marrone Bio Innovations Inc’s (NASDAQ:MBII) BioUnite pest management program is giving California’s almond and grape growers a tremendous edge by helping them tackle mid-season pest control issues.

The company said Tuesday that it launched BioUnite to provide growers with an integrated pest management program that harnesses the “power of biology with the performance of chemistry” to create a more affordable, safe and efficient food production system.

Headquartered in Davis, California, Marrone Bio Innovations provides bio-based pest management and plant health products for the US and international agricultural and water markets.

“Growers need innovative, cost-effective tools to operate in a dynamic, changing marketplace,” said Kevin Hammill, chief commercial officer at Marrone Bio Innovations. “We believe that BioUnite offers growers an exciting new resource to meet consumer demands.”

READ: Marrone Bio Innovations granted key claims by US patent office for bioinsecticide Grandevo WDG

BioUnite provides specific biological prescriptions that growers integrate into their operations, taking the guesswork out of using biologically derived pesticides with their standard crop protection programs.

Almond growers are currently using it to ward off navel orangeworm larvae which damage quality, reducing the value farmers receive for their crop.

In extensive 2018 field trials, the company’s Venerate biological insecticide, when tank mixed with a standard insecticide, reduced nut damage by an additional 2% compared with standard insecticide programs. The Venerate BioUnite program results in a 6-to-1 return on investment to the grower, said the company.

Integrates Haven plant health product

In grapes, the BioUnite program integrates the company’s Haven sun stress manager into the grower vine management program. Field trials show that Haven resulted in an 18% yield increase, delivering a 6-to-1 return on investment.

Similarly, when the company’s Regalia biofungicide was added to a grape growers disease control program, it resulted in a 57% improvement compared to the standard treatment, the company said. 

Founded in 2006, Marrone Bio Innovations holds more than 400 issued and pending patents and has brought six US Environmental Protection Agency-registered biological product lines and one biostimulant to market.

The company’s products include Zequanox, a biomolluscicide that controls invasive mussels which cause infrastructure and ecological damage primarily to power companies.

Other revenue spinners include Regalia, a plant extract-based fungicidal biopesticide, Venerate, a bioinsecticide for controlling insects, mites and flies and Haven, a plant health product that is applied to the leaves of plants to reduce sun stress.

Contact Uttara Choudhury at [email protected]

Follow her on Twitter@UttaraProactive 

Quick facts: Marrone Bio Innovations

Price: 1.2 USD

Market: NASDAQ
Market Cap: $182.97 m

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