February 15, 2013 09:45 ET

Making Pesticides Safe: Toronto-Based Agri-Neo Announces Funding of Up to $1.5 Million From Sustainable Development Technology Canada for the Development of Environmentally Friendly Pesticide

MONTREAL, QUEBEC--(Marketwire - Feb. 15, 2013) - Today, Agri-Neo announced that it received an investment of $1.5 million from the Government of Canada and Sustainable Development Technology Canada (SDTC) for the development of a bio-pesticide that will control bacteria while being safe for the environment and health.

The funding received by Agri-Neo was a part of a $61.8 million investment from the Government of Canada to support 23 clean technology projects across Canada.

"Our Government is doing its part to encourage innovation and the next wave of clean technologies to help protect our environment and create high-quality jobs," said the Honourable Joe Oliver, Canada's Minister of Natural Resources. "Investment in projects such as these demonstrates our leadership in driving a vibrant clean technology industry in Canada."

"Agri-Neo is pleased to receive funding from SDTC and the Government of Canada for the development of our new bio-pesticide that can be used on crops anywhere to control bacteria. This innovative product is highly efficacious, convenient, and respectful of our environment," said Rob Wong, President and COO. "Because of SDTC's investment in projects like ours, Canadian cleantech are able to contribute to a greener, more sustainable Canada while creating jobs within our communities."

"SDTC is proud to add this project to its portfolio, now valued at more than $2 billion. When purchased and used by Canadian industry, the clean technologies developed by portfolio companies will enable a variety of sectors to increase their share of global markets," said Dr. Vicky Sharpe, President and CEO of SDTC. "As Canada works to diversify its export markets, working with new trading partners in emerging countries, these innovative technologies will help make Canadian natural resources and products more globally attractive and competitive."

Bacteria can be devastating to growers, infecting crops and decreasing yield - translating into lost revenue. The current method of control is a mixture of copper-based pesticides and chemicals, which causes crop yield decrease along with soil and water contamination. Also, bacteria are developing resistance to these current market offerings over time.

Agri-Neo is developing a unique and safe-to-handle powdered product that provides effective control of bacteria while being safe for the environment and health. In trials so far, the product has increased crop yields by 10-40% versus copper-based pesticides. In fact, unlike copper-based pesticides, the by-products of this bio-pesticide are beneficial to crops and non-toxic to the surrounding environment and invertebrates such as worms and other 'decomposers' which ensure soil health.

About Agri Neo

Our global ecosystem is undergoing a major transformation, driven by factors such as booming population growth and the declining availability of arable land and fresh water. This has created the monumental challenge of producing more food with less resources. Existing agricultural products and practices are becoming increasingly inadequate to address this problem, and their continued use jeopardizes our environmental stability.

At Agri-Neo, our mission is to help growers turn this global challenge into an opportunity. We are dedicated to developing and marketing innovative solutions that can help growers increase their agricultural productivity while maintaining balance in the environment. By doing so, they can nourish more people with safe food, helping to feed all of us, and future generations to come.

About SDTC

On behalf of the Government of Canada, Sustainable Development Technology Canada helps commercialize Canadian clean technologies, readying them for growth and export markets. With a portfolio of companies under management valued at more than $2 billion, SDTC is positioning cleantech as a driver of jobs, productivity and economic prosperity.

SDTC operates two funds aimed at the development and demonstration of innovative technological solutions. The $590 million SD Tech Fund™ supports projects that address climate change, air quality, clean water, and clean soil. The $500 million NextGen Biofuels Fund™ supports the establishment of first-of-kind large demonstration-scale facilities for the production of next-generation renewable fuels.

SDTC works with the private sector, the financial sector and all levels of government to meet the Government of Canada's commitment to create a healthy environment and a high quality of life for all Canadians. SDTC operates as a not-for-profit corporation.

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