The new slow-release sachets

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By Sandra Langer
BioBee Marcom Manager

“BioBee is proud to announce that for the first time ever, the predatory mite Phytoseiulus persimilis (BioPersi+), the ultimate spider mite predator, can be applied preventively using slow-release sachets that will guarantee consistent and absolutely outstanding results,” announced Ran Ganel, CEO of BioBee Sde Eliyhau Ltd.

Phytoseiulus persimilis has been used successfully in Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs since the 1960s. Being prey specific, the traditional tritrophic rearing method (plant/pest/beneficial), although successful, has not supported the use of slow-release sachets. Tradition was upended at the beginning of this year with the announcement of a new mass rearing method for P. persimilis.

“BioBee’s patented, ground-breaking rearing technology is based on an absolutely non-obvious achievement: the successful development and reproduction of P. persimilis on alternative prey feed, which is by far different from its traditional well-known spider mite-based feed. This technology has yielded the BioPersi+ (animproved version of P. persimilis) and enabled its novel application method: Slow-release
sachets,” explains Dr Shimon Steinberg, BioBee’s Chief Scientific Officer.

The new product, BioPersi+, which arrives satiated and physiologically stronger, is able to seek and control hot spots faster and start laying eggs on the same day of application in the crop.

BioBee’s new technology makes the slowrelease option of P. persimilis a reality

BioPersi+ contains all the developmental stages of the mite (adult, juveniles and eggs). This population diversity creates a continuity of active mite predation, assuring longer, uninterrupted spider mite control. In the case of the BioPersi+sachets, it also means that P. persimilis continues to reproduce inside the sachet, while dispersion on the crop continues.

“The ability to avail P. persimilis with alternative feed within the sachet, makes the slow-release and preventive application of P. persimilis possible for the first time in commercial biological control,” explains Tom Katz, R&D entomologist at BioBee who heads the BioPersi+ slowrelease sachet development.

“BioPersi+ Speed Sachet with a slow release of more than 150 mites/sachet for up to 5 days is recommended for hotspot treatments. The BioPersi+ Classic Sachet has a slow release of more than 500 mites/sachet for up to 12 days and is recommended for preventive use,” adds Arnon Tabic, R&D entomologist and co-head of the project at BioBee.

Immediate-release sachets of P. persimilis have been around for some time now, yet because the P. persimilis is starved, the sachets must be perforated individually by the user when applied. BioPersi+ sachets (classic & speed) contain alternative feed; thus, the sachets are pre-perforated, ready to use, making the application faster, easier and more convenient to growers.

Exercising the “standing army” approach

BioBee is committed to the application of natural enemies as preventively as possible, exercising the “standing army” approach. This practice will decrease plant damage, the time and expense required for effective pest control, the chemical treatments needed as corrective measures, the delay of beneficial release and the required application rate of beneficial insects and mites.

The products, BioPersi+ Speed Sachet & Bio- Persi+ Classic Sachet are additional weapons to the IPM arsenal that allows growers to implement this approach. The BioPersi+Classic Sachet enables application of P. persimilis preventively, increasing dramatically the chance to address and combat the spider mite pest before it arrives (since P. persimilis is no longer dependent on its presence).

“BioPersi+ sachets can be used in crops such as: sweet pepper, cucumber, tomato, eggplant, cannabis, strawberry, raspberry, melon, watermelon, roses, cut flowers and other ornamentals… Basically, it can be applied on all crops!” explains Moshe Cohen, Senior Field Service Manager at BioBee. “It is an especially useful tool for medical cannabis growers who must avoid physical contact between the product carrier/formulation and any part of the plant.”

“BioPersi+ sachets have been introduced commercially in Israel, Mexico, the United States as well as Canada and the feedback is great. For growers throughout the world, the new BioPersi+ sachet’s addition to the portfolio of natural enemies means more effective, efficient and longer-lasting control of spider mites.

“The BioBee patented rearing technology guarantees a constantly available, top-quality product, regardless of weather or season,” adds Shachar Carmi VP of Marketing & Business Development at BioBee.

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