As many soft fruit growers are aware there is an immediate need to reconsider the use of Phosphites (now known as Phosphonates under the IUPAC naming recommendation) which for many growers have become important products in their production programmes for a variety of reasons.
This need is due to statutory rulings that came into effect from 1st January 2016 with the requirement to strictly adhere to MRL (Maximum Residue Level) demarcations for phosphites/phosphonates in soft fruit and other edible horticultural produce.
The MRLs for soft fruit differ depending on the crop type being grown (i.e. Strawberries = 75 mg/kg, Raspberries = 2 mg/kg etc.) giving concern over which products can be safely applied without exceeding the MRL settings.
ICL have been working on ways to assist growers with this dilemma so close to the new growing season and believe that the use of products from the Lallemand Plant Care range will provide a solution from early stages in crop growth through the main growth, flowering and fruiting phases and into the harvesting period.
Two products that will help in the absence or reduced usage of phosphonates/phosphites, within soft fruit cropping programmes are Cilus®Plus and Prestop®. Both of these products have no harvest intervals, no residues and no MRL issues attached to them.
These innovative products are based on pure cultures of naturally occurring beneficial micro-organisms and are produced in industry-leading facilities removing the threat of them containing any harmful contaminants. By using both Cilus Plus and Prestop the plant will benefit from 2 different modes of action that work synergistically with the sum of their actions being greater than their individual parts. Together they provide disease control and root stimulation for healthy, strong plants.
They offer the following major benefits:-
- Very safe for users and the environment;
- Zero harvest interval
- Totally compatible with biological and integrated pest management (IPM) programmes;
- Can be used in programmes with other biological control agents;
- Not harmful to beneficial insects, natural crop-pest enemies, pollinators or beneficial nematodes;
- Can be used in programmes with conventional fungicides, other agrochemicals or nutrient products;
- Prestop is registered for long lasting soil disease control
- Have the credentials to qualify as organic cropping inputs should the wish be to pursue that type of usage.