We included Marrone Bio Innovations’ Grandevo broad-spectrum, high performance natural insecticide to our list this year because the soft chemistry is a new proprietary product based on a USDA scientific discovery.

The Environmental Protection Agency approved, MBI-203 EP, which is branded as Grandevo. It is designed for use on agricultural and ornamental crops and was initially launched in Florida for insects such as citrus psyllid. MBI intends to launch Grandevo nationally in 2012.

“Grandevo is the first new microbial insecticide offered in nearly 50 years. Like its predecessor, Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis), we believe Grandevo has the potential to gain wide acceptance and become a standard insecticide in pest management programs,” said Chris Hildreth, senior vice president of commercial operations at MBI. “With its broad-spectrum activity against both sucking and chewing insects, high efficacy and unique mode of action, Grandevo represents a ‘grand evolution’ in insect control.”

Grandevo is derived from a new species of Chromobacterium, named subtsugae. The strain coded PRAA4-1T was originally discovered by USDA scientist Phyllis Martin, Ph.D., and licensed to MBI. When unwanted insects encounter Grandevo, they become highly agitated and try to remove the product from their bodies. When it is ingested, the targeted insects will stop feeding and die.

Grandevo is well suited for rotation in pest management programs to help prolong the efficacy of conventional pesticides and manage chemical residues. It can be used for managing psyllids, thrips, mealybugs, leaf miners, stinkbugs, Lygus, leaf beetles, white grubs and armyworms. Grandevo requires no pre-harvest interval and has minimum re-entry intervals, enabling crops to be harvested soon after application. Its exemption from the requirement of a food tolerance is particularly important for exported crops that are subject to maximum residue levels. Also, the product is compliant with the National Organic Program (NOP) and listed by the Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI). Grandevo can be used in field, greenhouse and garden markets.