Queensland University of Technology to test Exosect's platform technology for delivery of biological insect pest control in stored grain

20th November 2013

Grains Research & Development Corporation to fund development of biopesticide for key post-harvest grain pests.

Winchester, UK – Exosect today announced that *Queensland University of Technology (QUT) is to trial Exosect’s patented platform technology, *Entostat, to deliver biological active ingredients for the control of Lesser grain borer (Rhyzopertha dominca) and Rust red flour beetle (Tribolium spp.) in stored grain. The programme is being funded by the *Grains Research and Development Corporation (GRDC).

Insecticide resistance and a shortage of effective pest management options are significant international problems for the grain storage sector. The evolution of resistance to insecticides, withdrawal of chemical controls, market access restrictions and consumer demand have led to  a very limited range of control options. The Australian grain industry relies heavily on phosphine fumigation to meet market requirements for insect free grain.

This new technology employs Exosect’s proprietary delivery platform, Entostat, to deliver the biological, Beauveria bassiana, to control grain beetles, weevils and other stored grain insects. European regulatory field trials commenced in 2012 and in January 2013, a programme for the control of Larger grain borer (Prostephanus truncatus)commenced in Ghana and Tanzania. The efficacy trials to be carried out by QUT will assist in securing early regulatory approval in Australia for the first biological control in grain storage.

Dr. Caroline Hauxwell, Associate professor at QUT, comments, “About 80% of Australia’s cereal grains are treated by phosphine fumigation. Reliance on only a few chemical controls increases the risk of resistance so new economically viable control options and resistance management strategies are urgently needed.” 

 Exosect’s CEO, Martin Brown comments, “Exosect has, for the past seven years, been leading a UK government funded consortium to develop the first biological grain protectant for the European Market. The Australian grain industry had an average annual gross value of production at the farm gate of more than $9 billion* and it plays a vital role in the Australian economy.  We are delighted that this technology is being supported by the GRDC to assist Australian cereal producers and handlers with the growing difficulty in post-harvest pest control”

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