SOURCE: AgraQuest


April 05, 2012 18:26 ET

AgraQuest Expands Valuable Soil Disease Control Tool Into New Markets

SERENADE SOIL® Fungicide Label Expanded to Include Leafy Vegetables, Strawberries, Onion, and Brassicas

DAVIS, CA--(Marketwire - Apr 5, 2012) - AgraQuest, Inc. today announced SERENADE SOIL fungicide is now available for growers of bulb vegetables including onions, leafy vegetables like lettuce and spinach, strawberries, and cole crops in most of the U.S., in addition to tomatoes, peppers, cucurbits and potatoes previously labeled.

The product can now also be used for control of Sclerotium rolfsii in peanuts and tomatoes. SERENADE SOIL fungicide is the first soil fungicide based on AgraQuest's patented active ingredient Bacillus subtilis strain QST 713.

"We're excited by the expansion of SERENADE SOIL into new crops," said Sarah Reiter, AgraQuest's VP of Marketing - Agrochemicals & Food Value Chain. "Growers of leafy vegetables, brassicas and bulb crops will now have access to the soil disease and yield benefits of SERENADE SOIL proven through several years of expanding use in crops like potatoes."

Applied at planting or transplanting, SERENADE SOIL first attacks soil-dwelling pathogens, and then quickly builds a disease protection zone around the seed. As the seedling grows, the beneficial bacteria in SERENADE SOIL continue to grow, attaching themselves to the roots of the plant, expanding the disease protection zone. Unlike traditional soil fungicides, this second powerful effect continues to protect the plant during the season resulting in higher-yielding fields and better quality fruits and vegetables.

Developed by AgraQuest's R&D organization, SERENADE SOIL reflects the company's unique understanding of microbial fungicides and plant growth promotion.

"With more than $140 million invested in our science platform, the company is uniquely positioned to deliver tools like this to growers," said AgraQuest's CEO, Marcus Meadows-Smith.

Years of investigation have demonstrated that plants treated with SERENADE SOIL fungicide are stronger and healthier, as well as deliver average yield increases of better than 13% across a variety of crops, growing practices and production areas.

Available in the U.S. since January 2010, SERENADE SOIL fungicide has quickly gained acceptance among growers focused on increasing their yields and profits. Registrations for many of these expanded uses in California are anticipated later this year.

AgraQuest, Inc. is a global biotechnology company that focuses on discovering, manufacturing and marketing highly effective pest management products to increase agricultural production. As a leader in green agriculture and the emerging low chem sector, AgraQuest is at the forefront of changes in food production by providing growers with solutions that offer best-in-class control while reducing the chemical load on the environment and creating sustainable agriculture opportunities. Through its Agriculture and BioInnovations divisions, AgraQuest focuses on natural products designed for pest control and yield improvements for global agriculture, the garden and in food safety markets. For more information on the role AgraQuest innovations will play in Better Food and a Better World, visit