press releases

5th July 2023

SUR essential to unlock biocontrol for farmers

As per the Council request at the end of 2023, the European Commission additional study to the impact assessment on the SUR has just been published.

This study recognises “the potential of alternatives, including biocontrol, as a key contribution to achieving pesticide reduction targets”.

“The SUR is essential to unlock the potential of alternatives such as biocontrol” underlines International Biocontrol Industry Association Executive Director Jennifer Lewis.

This additional study, complementing the impact assessment on the Sustainable Use of Plant Protection Products Regulation (SUR), confirms alternatives are ready in the pipeline with applications for 79 new biocontrol active substances and 54 extensions of uses of existing substances expected before 2028, citing data provided by 26 company members of the International Biocontrol Industry Association (IBMA).

“Biocontrol innovations have significant potential to replace chemical pesticides in a range of crops, including in field crops such as cereals and oilseed“ concludes the additional study, referencing provisional authorisations to get enough alternatives to farmers by 2030.

“We hope this additional study from the Commission paves the way for constructive discussions in the European Parliament and Council to improve farmers’ access to biocontrol which is essential for IPM and resilient food systems” added IBMA Executive Director Jennifer Lewis.

The biocontrol industry is worth €1.4 billion in Europe and €6 billion worldwide. The industry is ready to invest even more into solutions for Europe when the authorisation process is fast-tracked. With its biocontrol EU Definition and clear support for alternatives, the SUR is essential to unlock biocontrol potential”

Notes to Editors – please find below some useful links leading to some additional information and letters signed by IBMA:

27th April 2023

We need biological control for the agriculture transition

26th october 2022

More than 1550 biocontrol industry representatives gather in Basel at ABIM the premier global meeting of the biocontrol industry.

31st August 2022

The European Commission adopted the new rules for micro-organisms (also known as microbials) used in plant protection products

IBMA reaction:

IBMA welcomes the European Commission adoption of the new rules for micro-organisms (also known as microbials) used in plant protection products.

IBMA would like to underline the following points:

  • IBMA appreciates that the weight of evidence approach can replace the systematic use of animal studies to address toxicity and pathogenicity end points.
  • Biology and ecology are considered the basis for the risk assessment decisions, which is a key adaptation for effective microbial risk assessment,
  • These revised Data Requirements are a crucial part of the Farm to Fork strategy implementation but alone cannot speed up the delivery of micro-organisms/microbials to the farmers.
  • The authorization process of 1107/2009 needs to be implemented in a way that allows authorization and placing on the market in Member States within 1-3 years of initial submission as seen for biocontrol in other countries such as USA and Brazil.  Timescales for a product to reach the market following submission in the European Union range from 4 years to 10 years.

22nd June 2022

IBMA Global, Regulation on Sustainable Use of Plant Protection Products proposal

29th March 2022

IBMA Global, IBMA France and IEEP Unlocking the potential of biocontrol

23rd March 2022

SUD revision Delay: Food security and sustainability – it all starts with the B of Biocontrol

11th February 2022

The EU Member states have approved new rules to accelerate the approval and authorisation of biological plant protection products containing microorganisms to reduce reliance on chemical pesticides.

IBMA reaction:

IBMA thanks the European Commission for their work to revise the microbial data requirements (DRs). In particular, we appreciate that the weight of evidence approach can replace the systematic use of animal studies to address tox and pathogenicity end points and and there is conditionality in the requirements.

However, IBMA Executive Director Jennifer Lewis underlines: ´´Unfortunately these changes appear unable to speed up microbials authorization. In fact, there is little fundamental change to the existing DRs: which is a disappointing missed opportunity to align European Commission policies to the goals of Farm to Fork. ´´

The most significant change is the incorporation of the secondary metabolite guidance, which stems from a chemical definition of a metabolite, and is now driving the new data requirements and will create some technically unrealistic studies for microbial metabolites that are not of safety concern. This highlights the need for more experts on microbials within the European Commission and Member States to ensure relevant evaluation of the microbial products. Currently it takes up to 10 years for microbials to reach the market. A fast track system must be implemented immediately for microbials and other biocontrol in order to meet the Farm to Fork Strategy objectives for pesticide reduction.

20th October 2021

IBMA FiBL – More than 970 biocontrol industry representatives gather at ABIM in Basel – a strong boost for our nature based solutions

14th October 2021

EU Farm to Fork Conference 2021: Back Biocontrol, not chemical pesticides

24th June 2021

IBMA IEEP – Biocontrol can offer a systemic and balanced solution for sustainable agriculture

14th April 2021

IBMA assists in the development of the CABI BioProtection Portal and shared mission of greater ‘green diplomacy’

7th April 2021

IBMA 2021 Biocontrol Industry survey calls on members to make a strong can-do statement

1st April 2021

SUD Review: Bioprotection-biocontrol technologies make a crucial contribution to the transition to more agroecological farming

26th May 2020

IBMA, the voice of the biocontrol industry, thanks the European Commission for the coherence of the Farm to Fork strategy for alternatives to chemical pesticides and the biodiversity strategy

23rd January 2020

Biocontrol technologies as key part of farmers’ toolbox

16th January 2020

IBMA and the organic movement call for better regulation of natural origin plant protection technologies  

22nd October 2019

Proportionate Regulation and Biocontrol is a reality

3rd June 2019

Jennifer Lewis, IBMA member former employee, is our new Executive Director

7th February 2019

IBMA lodges a complaint with the EU Ombudsman against the EU Commission, for maladministration regarding the adaptation of the PPPs Regulation 1107/2009

Version Francaise

Deutsche Fassung Pressemitteilung

7th February 2019

Joint IBMA Copa-Cogeca Press Release – Sustainable Plant Protection – Copa and Cogeca and IBMA host a high level symposium to discuss the necessity of expanding farmers’ toolbox

23rd October 2018

IBMA White Paper – A New EU Regulatory Framework for Bioprotection Agents: IBMA Vision on how to improve regulation in the European Union

11th September 2018 – Joint Press Release with Copa-Cogeca

Biocontrol solutions in the limelight – Copa-Cogeca and IBMA publish their new Roadmap for collaboration on biocontrol solutions

19th June 2018

IBMA Biocontrol Survey Report

3rd November 2017

ABIM 2017: The biggest gathering of biocontrol professionals – ever. 

17th February 2017

IBMA, COPA and COGECA welcome European Parliament resolution calling for faster access to the European Market for Low-Risk pesticides.

3rd February 2017

The European Parliament ENVI Committee votes 59-1 in favour of a motion for resolution providing faster access for low-risk pesticides in the European Market.

11th July 2016

IBMA Official response to the Implementation Plan on Acceleration of Sustainable Plant Protection as proposed by the Netherlands Ministry of Economic Affairs: Priority for low-risk plant protection products,as indicated in the Preamble (17) of Regulation (EC) 1107/2009, means prioritizing now

2nd February 2016

Biocontrol and Biopesticide Associations Form International Federation

26th November 2015, IBMA/PAN Europe Press release 

Sustainable use of pesticides: one year delay in publishing European Commission report

15th July 2015, IBMA/Copa-Cogeca Press release

IBMA, Copa and Cogeca stress at high-level event that demand for bio-pesticides rising, but overly bureaucratic regulatory system stops market developing

26th November 2014, IBMA/PAN Europe Press release

The European Commission missed today’s deadline to submit a report to the Parliament and the Council on increased use of alternatives for pest and disease control