Article from North & South Magazine
The article above as published within the January 2012 issue of North & South Magazine.
Crop pioneer fights the bio-battle
Non chemical spray innovator sets its sights on overseas markets Sometimes, innovation can be gruesome - particularly if you're a
crop-eating insect meeting a new fungal-based biological spray.
"The fungal spores grab hold of the insect and they punch a hole through the insect, climb inside and put a root system inside the insect and use it as a food source," says Stephen Ford, technical director at Biotelliga.
Biotech company aims to bridge green gap
A Pukekohe company is riding high
on a wave of support for environmentally friendly pesticides.
Bioagritech producer Biotelliga is
at the forefront of the development
of biological pesticides for the horticultural industry using fungi.
The company has worked alongside scientists to discover about 100 strains of entomopathogenic fungi - fungi that can kill or seriously maim insects.
Bayer innovators awards
Biotelliga has been anounced as a finalist within the 2011 Bayer Innovators awards within the environment and agriculture section for our aim to remove toxic pesticides' from the food chain.
Biotelliga - Company Video
Generation 3 Metacide in combination with entomopathogenic fungi and biopolymers.
2010 Entrepreneurs Challenge Winners Interview
Kiwi ingenuity behind Biotelliga success
Passion, dogged persistence and an innovative approach have been credited with driving Biotelliga closer to its ambition of global domination in the pesticide market. The Auckland company started out as Millennium Microbes in 2004, making environmentally-friendly pesticides that use fungal-based entomopathogens instead of chemicals to control insects.
Entries open for share of $1 million loan pot
Innovators looking to crack overseas markets have another chance to gain a share of $1 million as the University of Auckland Business School Entrepreneurs' Challenge kicks off for 2011.
Biotelliga, one of last year's three winners, said its share of the cash
allowed it to market its products internationally. "We were missing a key piece of equipment which would have enabled us to increase our production base and the win let us buy our bio-reactor, which is the linchpin of our operation," said technical director Stephen Ford.
'Zombie ants' controlled by parasitic fungus for 48m years
The oldest evidence of a fungus that turns ants into zombies and makes them stagger to their death has been uncovered by scientists.
The fungus grows inside the ants and releases chemicals that affect their behaviour. Some ants leave the colony and wander off to find fresh leaves on their own, while others fall from their tree-top havens on to leaves nearer the ground.
Toxin linked to hotel deaths
A potentially lethal toxin which causes symptoms similar to those which New Zealander Sarah Carter had before she died has been found in her Chiang Mai hotel room.
Thai authorities said the chemical compound was thought to be an insecticide for bed bugs.
EPA Needs to Protect Bees from Pesticides' Sting
Bees do us a big favor by pollinating plants, which allows us to enjoy those little luxuries in life such as food.
However, the little black and gold insects are threatened. It appears they are being killed off by a type of pesticide called neonicotinoids.
The Disappearing Male
Pesticides are changing the human species at a genetic level.
The last few decades have seen steady and dramatic increases in the incidence of boys and young men suffering from genital deformities, low sperm count, sperm abnormalities and testicular cancer. At the same time, boys are now far more at risk of suffering from ADHD, autism, Tourette's syndrome, cerebral palsy, and dyslexia.
The Disappearing Male takes a close and disturbing look at what many doctors and researchers now suspect are responsible for many of these problems: a class of common chemicals that are ubiquitous in our world.
BPA-Exposed Male Mice Are Demasculinised and Undesirable to Females, New Study Finds
While the FDA notes "some concern" with the controversial chemical BPA, many countries, such as Japan and Canada, have considered BPA product bans. The latest research shows that BPA causes male deer mice to become demasculinised and behave more like females in their spatial navigational abilities, leading scientists to conclude that exposure to BPA during human development could be damaging to behavioral and cognitive traits that are unique to each sex and important in reproduction.
Pesticide exposure in the womb may lower IQ
Pregnant women may want to switch to organic produce – exposure to specific pesticides in the womb is linked to a reduced IQ among children.
At the age of seven, the IQ scores of children of the women in the group with the highest pesticide exposures were on average seven points lower than those of women with the lowest exposures.
Toxic farming chemical forces hotel evacuations.
About 40 people were evacuated from hotels near Auckland Airport last night after fumes from a pesticide, which has historically been used in chemical warfare, wafted through their windows from a neighbouring farm.
Submissions sought on insecticides acephate and methamidophos
ERMA New Zealand is calling for submissions on a proposal to phase out the use of the insecticides acephate and methamidophos. Acephate and methamidophos are organophosphates used on crops such as avocados, citrus, boysenberries, potatoes, onions, sweetcorn, tomatoes and brassicas.
Organophosphate Pesticides Linked to ADHD
In a representative sample of US children, those with higher levels of organophosphate pesticide metabolites in their urine were more likely to have attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) than children with lower levels, indicating less exposure to these compounds, researchers report in the June issue of Pediatrics.