Kemin Crop Technologies provides commercial specialty crop farmers with effective crop protection and health products. Our team of experts is committed to help you learn about new technologies and cultivating new market perspectives. See where the industry has trusted us and where we have contributed to the conversation!
The Biological Industry is gaining traction, but many specialty crop farmers want more information about the science and efficacy of those types of products. Meister Media, for example, dives deep into the state of the Biological Industry in their Biological Crop Protection and Plant Health Annual Report.
Emily Fuerst, Kemin Crop Technologies R & D Director, shares her insights on the current and future state of the industry. Then, Michael Hull conveys the benefits of inserting a botanical product into an integrated pest management program for both conventional and organic growers.
“Education is probably the number one thing that many growers need because these products are so incredibly diverse. The microbial and biostimulant categories alone have multiple subcategories, all with different activities and modes of action. Knowing how they should be applied and the expected results you should get, even down to the plant species, will be very different. Our company makes sure we explicitly understand the mode of action at the chemical level, so we can give an explanation for what’s happening, potential interaction, and what a grower should see. There’s not going to be a single product that’s going to solve all problems, and any number of factors in a greenhouse or operation can throw things off balance, so you have to be able to make adjustments. Having a strong program in place can help you minimize that risk.
It usually comes down to having close conversations with growers to understand their challenges and needs, so we can identify where the market needs to be going and set up our growers for success. Cannabis and hemp have been a huge growth area, and there’s been a lot of demand in that sector. A number of solutions are available, but they need to be translated over and approved. In the larger picture, growers often have the same consistent needs. One that came up recently is drought tolerance due to the high heat the West Coast and parts of North America are experiencing. They can only control so many factors, so we are trying to help them mitigate risk, whether it’s insects, microbial pathogens, or fertilizer. Growers also have many other things that, as an industry partner, we don’t always have control over, such as labor. So if we can help in the production process itself, growers can spend time trying to solve other related business problems.”
“Too often, growers get caught up in the word, “organic” and not the other essential characteristics of biological products. Even a conventional grower who applies synthetic chemistries can apply and use botanical-based biologicals. Sometimes growers think biologicals and OMRI listed products do not work as well as synthetic chemistries. They tend to have a reactive approach to problems over a proactive approach and require more awareness of when problems occur. With this knowledge, even conventional growers can add biologicals to their IPM program."
Our blog post, "Including Botanicals in an Integrated Pest Management Program," was shared in three industry magazines! Botanical oil-based pesticides are practical tools for any integrated pest management program. Many specialty crop growers are still learning how to unlock the advantages of such biological pest control. This blog shares the benefits of a botanical product in an IPM program and tips for growers on application timing.
“We often recommend adding botanical oil-based pesticides into an integrated pest management program for growers who are looking for a product to clean up pests before harvest time,” said Hull.
Strong integrated pest management and vine health programs can elevate grape growers' operations. Growing Produce shared this article to educate grape growers on the impact of a proactive vine health program.
Richard Jones, California Sales Representative for Kemin Crop Technologies, says adequate levels of nutrients are needed to minimize imbalances and maximize yield or quality issues, although yield and quality are not necessarily the goals of wine grape growers. “That’s a distinction that needs to be identified and varies per winery and contract,” he says. “The winemakers ultimately take the initiative in deciding how it should be done. Grape growers may overlook maximum residue level issues on some crop protection materials, and that can cause significant problems if their products are flagged in the EU.”
The Biological Market is changing quickly, and many growers want to learn more about how these products can help them reach success. Growing Produce shares 10 ways growers can improve their understanding on the use of biologicals in crops.
“Essential oil-based products are safer for workers and the environment, compared to traditional synthetic materials,” Hull says. “They have zero-hour preharvest intervals and re-entry intervals, so growers can apply them at and up to harvest time.”
Growing Produce shares information about biological crop protection options for vegetable and other specialty crop growers. In their article, Michael Hull shares his opinions on how growers can utilize biologicals on their crops. “Providing growers with environmentally friendly options that have proven efficacy will help them control the diseases and pests while being safe and sustainable at the same time,” Hull says. “These biologicals developments will be vital for the future of sustainable agriculture, crop health, and protection.
Biological products are effective on many specialty crops, but some growers want to see how it performs on specific crop species. Greenhouse Grower shares a list of biological products that can benefit greenhouse lettuce growers. Included in that list is TetraCURB™ Concentrate, a plant-based biological with rosemary oil as its active ingredient. TetraCURB can control and mitigate whiteflies, thrips, aphids, or mites on leafy greens.
Vineyards in the Western U.S. often fight Vine Mealybugs (VMB). There are few chemical management options to control the pest, and the more they are used, the greater the likelihood for insecticide resistance to develop. This article by Growing Produce conveys to grape growers that biological solutions are a great addition to an integrated pest management program.
Richard Jones, California Sales Representative for Kemin Crop Technologies, shares the benefits of TetraCURB for grape growers. “One of their main attractive features are zero-day preharvest interval (PHI) and maximum residue limit (MRL) exemption, making them convenient and safe products for grape growers to work with,” Jones says.
Greenhouse, vegetable and fruit growers need crop protection solutions that are effective on pests and environmentally conscious. Greenhouse Grower shares insights from experts in the biological industry. In their article, Michael Hull shares his thoughts on what growers can do to control pests effectively.
A proactive preventative approach is critical for leafy green growers. Leafy green crops provide an extra challenge for growers, as pests can hide within the head of the plant or behind leaves. Greenhouse Grower conveys the importance of planning and utilizing biological products for leafy green growers.
In the article, Michael Hull, Technical Services Manager at Kemin Crop Technologies, articulates botanical products' opportunities to crop growers. “Growers have too often assumed that oil-based pesticides will burn their crops or not be efficacious,” Hull says. “However, new products on the market are field-proven and designed to be safe for the plant, worker, and the environment.”
We want to connect with industry experts and specialty crop growers, so we launched a Facebook page to establish deeper relationships.
“We think that the Facebook page will offer our audience a way to become more connected to our team and learn about things happening in the field,” Product Manager Tatiana Giacinti said.