After being introduced to the market in March, two products that feature a new nanotech delivery system for fungicide and insecticide have performed well in field observations.

The technology, called Allosperse, uses polymer nanoparticle shuttles to control how and when crop protection products are delivered to the plant after being applied. This is new technology for agriculture that is comparable to how some pharmaceuticals are delivered to precise targets within the human body.

Farmers in Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota, North Dakota, Iowa and Illinois applied the two new products, AZteroid and Bifender, to corn and soybean acres this spring. In addition, trials were conducted in potato and sugarbeet plots.

It’s still too early to assess yield results, said Dr. Darren Anderson, chief communications officer for Vive Crop Protection, but producer feedback and field observations have been excellent. “AZteroid is the first fungicide built for compatibility with liquid fertilizer, and producers were pleased with their new-found ability to apply starter fertilizer and fungicide in-furrow in a single pass.”

In field observations, corn and soybean plants grown with a combination of starter fertilizer and AZteroid applied in-furrow were larger with significantly more root mass when compared with plants that only received starter fertilizer.

This combination of AZteroid and fertilizer was applied as one uniform mixture, thanks to the Allosperse technology. Crop protection products typically fail to mix thoroughly with liquid fertilizer. However, with Allosperse this problem is no longer an issue. As a result, multiple products can be conveniently applied in a single pass across the field.

“One producer relayed a story of mixing AZteroid with starter fertilizer in the tank, only to be delayed for four days because of rain,” Dr. Anderson explained. “When he was finally able to get in the field, there was only a small amount of residue in the check balls and even that came right off once he got moving.”

Producers said the products worked well when mixed directly in the fertilizer tank as well as when applied through a Dosatron. There were no problems even with a high-zinc starter fertilizer, and the products exhibited excellent mixing properties with glyphosate and Capture LFR.