Biological Crop Protection

 Farmers are showing increased interest to replace chemical products by biologicals. Bio Crop Protection consists of bio-herbicides,  bio-fungicides, bio-insecticides, and they are all produced from natural sources such as living plants, and microorganisms. Organisms in nature all compete with each other by production of substances such as antimicrobials, or anti fungal compounds. Biological Crop Protection products are derived from live organisms, and can control pests and diseases including those based on bacteria, fungi, viruses, and nematodes. 

Bio Crop Protection products act by two main mechanisms: Either they inhibit other organisms, or they activate the plant defense system. A significant number of natural crop protection agents are produced by fungi, bacteria,  or by plants.  Important examples are antimicrobial peptides in plants and bacteria.  Harpin is an example of a plant signaling protein involved in plant defense which can be triggered by spraying saponins on plants (Heads Up Plant Protectant[1]).  

Chemical crop protection companies have been introducing and aquiring organic crop protection products during the last decade. The biological products industry estimates global sales of biologicals will amount to about 3 billion US$, up from 250 Million US$ at the start of the decade. [2] There is a lot more potential for new biological concepts, we just have to work on discovering them.  CCC works on using the carnation seed containing several promising concepts in this regard.