Bernard Blum Award 2019

9 October 2018 – Three Products Shortlisted for the 2019 Bernard Blum Award

Three products are now on the shortlist for the 2019 Bernard Blum Award for novel biocontrol solutions: 

– Andermatt Biocontrol, for the product Tutavir, which contains a Phthorimaea operculella granulovirus (PhopGV) for selective control of the tomato leafminer. It is well suited for population and damage control. Due to its high specificity, Tutavir is the best candidate for integrated pest management programs. Furthermore, because of its unique mode of action, Tutavir is an important tool for resistance management in conventional and biological production systems. Tutavir is an effective tool for the sustainable control of one of the most destructive tomato pests, which has developed widespread resistance to many active substances.

– Biohelp GmbH in cooperation with University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU) for the product Ailantex®. Ailantex® is a microbial herbicide for the control of the highly invasive neophyte Ailanthus altissima (“Tree of heaven”). The Tree of heaven, which is a very fast growing tree species, adapted to poor soils and warm climate was originally imported as an ornamental tree to Europe. Meanwhile, it has developed into a severe threat because it may cause significant damage to buildings and infrastructure facilities, such as railway tracks, roads, embankments or pipeline routes. With Commission Implementing Regulation (EU) 2019/1262 of 25 July 2019, Ailanthus altissima has also been included in the “list of invasive alien species of Union concern”. A team of researchers from the University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna, detected and isolated a virulent strain of the naturally occurring fungus Verticillium nonalfalfae. For the biological control of Ailanthus altissima, a spore suspension is directly injected into the tree. After inoculation, fungal spores of Verticillium nonalfalfae are distributed in the sap stream. Germinated spores in turn form local mycelium aggregations, which release enzymes and toxins into the water transport tissue. This leads to withering and subsequent decay of the plants. The first symptoms can occur 4-6 weeks after inoculation if applied early and under favourable conditions. In the case of large trees, the effect is usually only visible in the following year. The present strain of Verticillium nonalfalfae has a high host specificity. Moreover, Verticillium nonalfalfae can spread into neighboring shoots if they are connected to an infected tree by root runners, so it is not necessary to treat each tree individually. For this reason, Ailantex is a highly efficient and environmentally sustainable method for the control of Ailanthus altissima with just a single
application required. 

– Gowan Crop Protection for the product EcoSwing, a botanical, biologically based fungicide. Examples of pests controlled are powdery mildew, botrytis, and monilinia. EcoSwing is a biofungicide for use on growing crops in agricultural, greenhouse, ornamental and turf use sites to control fungal diseases such as powdery mildew (oidiums), sour rot, and Botrytis cinerea. Optimum disease control is achieved when the biofungicide is used according to label directions and applied in a regularly scheduled preventative spray program. The use of EcoSwing is compatible with the principles of Integrated Pest Management (IPM) and programs that attempt to minimize disease resistance to fungicides. Unlike single-site mode of action fungicides, which are at risk from disease resistance, EcoSwing has a multi-site mode of action, and may be used to delay or prevent the development of resistance to single site fungicides.

The winner of the 2019 Bernard Blum Award will be announced during ABIM.  IBMA will award a trophy, interview and product placement in New Ag International and 2BMonthly publications, as well as complementary registration for ABIM 2020 and the three shortlisted finalists will have a poster to display their innovations on the Bernard Blum Award booth at ABIM 2019. 

Bernard Blum Award 2019 for Novel Biocontrol Solutions

List of nominees 

CompanyProduct name
Agrauxine by LesaffreJulietta
Andermatt Biocontrol AGTutavir
APEOBio Herbicides Portfolio: APEO 01, 02 & 03
biohelp GmbH in cooperation with BOKU ViennaAilantex
CBC (Europe) Srl – BIOGARD Div.BIOOtwin L
Gowan Crop ProtectionEcoSwing

Nominations in detail:

Agrauxine by Lesaffre for the product Julietta, a biofungicide based on a specific strain of Saccharomyces
cerevisia LAS02, against the botrytis on grapevine, table grape, vegetables and fruits production and against monilial in orchards.

APEO for the product Bio Herbicides Portfolio: APEO 01 (targetting Dicots weeds and moss in Home and Garden use), APEO 02 (against Dicot and monocot weeds also in professional agriculture) & APEO 03 (specific weeds such as CHEAL, FUMOF, TAROF & SONAR).

BIOLINE AGROSCIENCES for the product TRICHOLINE VITIS, a biocontrol solution to fight against the Grape Berry Moths (GBM) of the vineyard.

biohelp GmbH in cooperation with University of Natural Resources and Life Sciences, Vienna (BOKU) for the product Ailantex.

CBC (Europe) Srl – BIOGARD Div. for the product BIOOtwin L, biodegradable dispensers for the control of
Lobesia botrana in grapes.

Gowan Crop Protection for the product EcoSwing, a botanical, biologically based fungicide. Examples of
pests controlled are powdery mildew, botrytis, and monilinia.

Andermatt Biocontrol AG for the product Tutavir, which contains a Phthorimaea operculella granulovirus (PhopGV) for selective control of the tomato leafminer.

It is expected that the winning entry will have a high impact in management of pests or diseases whilst having a low impact on human health and the environment.

As with our winning entry from Vestaron in 2015, Agrauxine Le Saffre in 2016, CBC Europe in 2017 and Marrone Bio Innovations in 2018, there will be a permanent linking of the winner and their contribution to our industry with our founding father Bernard Blum whom the award and trophy is dedicated to again in this 24th anniversary of the formation of IBMA as an association.

IBMA will award a trophy and a 4 full page adverts in any 2020 New Ag International Magazine Issues 2020, as well as complementary registration for ABIM 2020 and the 3 shortlisted finalists will have a poster to display their innovations at ABIM 2019, the premier global biocontrol industry event. 

In 1995, Bernard Blum laid the foundation for the International Biocontrol Manufacturers Association, anticipating an important and growing industry in the field of plant protection. The Bernard Blum award and trophy is dedicated to IBMA’s founding father.

Every year since 2015, an independent jury selects among a number of entries a winning biocontrol product which provides an effective solution in the management of pests or diseases while having a low impact on human health and the environment. A second and third place are also awarded.

The winners are announced at the IBMA Annual General Assembly during ABIM in Basel, Switzerland. In 2017, CBC Europe won the Bernard Blum Award for the product TREMOS, a digital electronic system used to disrupt location and mating of leafhopper species. The second place went to LifeGard® from Certis USA L.L.C and the Ulti-Mite Swirski from Koppert Biological Systems was awarded third place.

The Bernard Blum Award Booth at ABIM 2018

 Previous winners of the Bernard Blum Award:
2018WinnerBurkholderiaMarrone Bio Innovations
 2nd PlaceEco-Noc (Nomu-Protec)Plant Health Products
 3rd PlaceCOS-OGAFytofend
2017WinnerTremosCBC Europe
 2nd PlaceLifeGard®Certis USA
 3rd PlaceUlti-Mite Swirski Koppert
 2nd PlaceAttracap® Biocare GmbH
 3rd PlaceIsonet® LPF Shin-Etsu  & CBC (Europe)
2015WinnerSpear tmVestaron
 2nd PlacePMV® -01 DCM & De Ceuster
 3rd PlaceFlying Doctors® Biobest