Biologics are based on materials found in nature. At the Bayer Crop Science booth during the Farm Progress Show I spoke with Head of Biologic Research for Bayer CropScience, Dr. Jonathan Margolis, who is based out of their new facilities in Sacramento, CA. There he works with live microbes like bacteria, fungi and plant extracts.
“The difference between those and conventional chemical products is they typically have multiple modes of action and they don’t have regulated residue allowing them to be applied up until harvest.”
“The biologics are doing two things. They are acting as crop protectant agents. They are suppressing disease or killing pests. But in addition they act on the plant so they can stimulate yield or stress resistance. In the case of seed growth the microbe colonizes the roots and gives season long protection.”
Dr. Margolis said historically biologics were only used in horticulture because of concerns of residue and safety. Now the row crop industry recognizes all these other benefits which are complimentary to chemical products.
The development of biologics at Bayer stems from the acquisition of AgriQuest and put them in a new world-class facility where they are able to meet the safety standards and gives room for all the new hires they are making with this addition. In my interview with Dr. Margolis he goes on the share what products they have in the research and development stages and what we can see coming down the pipeline in 2015.
Here is my complete interview with Dr. Margolis:[wpaudio url=”http://zimmcomm.biz/farm-progress/fps-14-bayer-margolis.mp3″ text=”Interview with Dr. Jonathan Margolis, Bayer CropScience Biologics”]