BOOSTER-Mag approved for field and protected crops

Materials technology group Calix has had its BOOSTER-Mag 609 SC product approved as a non-lethal insecticide for the suppression of two-spotted mite (Tetranychus urticae) in tomatoes and cucurbits (field and protected crops).

The product, which has undergone extensive field testing, is the first registration of a magnesium hydroxide insecticide in the world.

Australia’s APVMA has been considering Calix’s application since January 2020, with the company now free to market BOOSTER-Mag 609 SC as a non-lethal insecticide.

With suppression efficacy also apparent on additional crop pests and a variety of crop diseases, the initial registration provides a basis to expand the addressable market.

BOOSTER-Mag is a suspension concentrate (“SC”) of bioactive magnesium hydroxide, developed as a foliar treatment to suppress a variety of crop insect pests and diseases, reducing farmer reliance on conventional pesticides without compromising crop yield or yield quality.

According to Calix: “The BOOSTER-Mag value proposition can be summarised as a means to reduce farmer input costs and produce food more safely and sustainably.”

Calix’s core technology is around the creation of unique materials characterised by their high porosity and reactivity, with highly porous magnesium oxide and magnesium hydroxide products found over six years of scientific study to be bioactive.

The company won the support of grant funding through the AusIndustry Accelerated Commercialisation programme to develop and trial the product.

Further, the federal government’s Manufacturing Modernisation Fund provided $1 million in support to develop the company’s biotech manufacturing capability at Bacchus Marsh, Victoria, establishing an advanced manufacturing capability for crop protection, marine coatings, and health and pharmaceutical applications.

The Greek research organisation, CERTH also developed insights into the mode of action of BOOSTER-Mag on tomatoes by measuring the microbiological response of the sprayed plants.

Calix is now developing commercial relationships with specialist global crop protection companies with the expertise and capability to fully utilise Calix’s material bioactivity.

Pictures: Calix

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