Source: Marrone press release

Marrone Organic Innovations, Inc. has introduced Regalia SC, a new tool for controlling both fungal and bacterial diseases in a wide range of fruit, vegetable and ornamental crops. The new biopesticide product is good news for growers of grapes, lettuce, strawberries, walnuts, peppers and other specialty crops who face such troubling diseases as powdery mildew, Botrytis, downy mildew, gummy stem blight, bacterial blight, canker and leaf spot and speck. Regalia SC prevents these diseases by switching on the plant's own natural defense mechanisms so plants produce - and accumulate - higher levels of natural proteins and other compounds that inhibit disease development.

The California crop registration was announced at the annual conference of California Agricultural Pest Control Advisers.

This unique mode of action provides the same level of control expected from conventional fungicides. Regalia SC gives specialty crop growers not only a new option for control of diseases, but also a new mode of action to strengthen their resistance management strategy.

The EPA-registered product is an extract of giant knotweed, Reynoutria sachalinensis, that also effectively controls target spot, tomato late and early blight and other crop diseases. Compounds that are extracted from the knotweed are proven to stimulate the crops' natural defense system against plant pathogens. More than 100 field trials have demonstrated the product's performance.

Regalia SC has both crop and noncrop labels in California, including grapes, walnuts, cucurbits, lettuce, tomatoes, peppers and strawberries.

"It is exciting to introduce a product with proven performance and a novel mode of action that can be integrated into disease management programs," said David Warman, Marrone's National Sales Manager. "There are still many crop diseases for which new solutions are needed. Despite the plethora of powdery mildew products, growers still rank alternatives to sulfur for powdery mildew control as one of their top needs," he said, adding that "While Regalia SC is available for use on certain specialty crops such as grapes, walnuts, tomatoes, peppers, lettuce and cucurbits, it will also be an important tool for the ornamental grower for the management of a wide range of diseases."

The product was originally developed by North Carolina-based KHH Biosci, Inc. from technology discovered at BASF and spun out into KHH. Marrone purchased the assets of KHH in early 2008, including patents, trademarks, EPA registrations, formulation and manufacturing technology, and field trial data.