5 Questions With Rick Kraus Of Valent U.S.A.

5 Questions With...

American/Western Fruit Grower recently talked with Rick Kraus, Valent U.S.A. Corp. brand manager, and Curtis Rainbolt, a BASF technical service representative. The discussion focused on topics such as grower needs and resistance issues. What follows are five questions we asked of Kraus and Rainbolt and their responses.

Q: What are the key attributes your company looks for when developing fungicides for fruits and vegetables, and how do those attributes relate to grower needs?

KRAUS: We try to bring something new and novel to the industry that has a different mode of action. The reason why that is so important is that it is necessary to assist growers with overall resistance management. Over time, there has been continuous exposure to older chemistries and they have started to slip in their overall performance. The other thing we try to do, as we go out into the marketplace, is to talk about stewardship related to the use of all materials. That really relates to making sure growers use the right fungicide for the right reasons.

RAINBOLT: There are two key attributes. No. 1, performance. No. 2, ideally a new mode of action or bringing a current mode of action into a new crop. Improved performance allows the grower to maximize the potential yield and quality of their crop. Bringing a new mode of action to a crop allows the grower to effectively practice resistance management.

Q:What are growers saying is most important in disease control?

RAINBOLT: The most important thing to the grower is having fungicides that perform at a high level and consistently deliver a return on investment. In order to maintain performance over the long term, it is important to practice resistance management by rotating fungicide modes of action. If you relied on just one mode of action, there would eventually be a problem with resistance. That’s why we just brought Vivando (metrafenone) to the grape market. It has a new mode of action.

KRAUS: For apples or pome fruit in the Eastern part of the U.S., the most important disease to control is apple scab. Apple scab is a disease that either growers do a good job controlling, which in turn brings a premium price for those apples in the fresh market environment, or if they do a poor job, obviously that creates a scab situation and decreases the potential income of the grower.

When it comes to stone fruit, brown rot is the biggest disease growers are concerned with. With brown rot it is the timing of the applications but also the situation as it relates to the weather conditions.

Q: Because resistance is such an issue, how can you stop or discourage growers from over-using a new, effective product?

KRAUS: It literally starts at the writing of our label. We have language on our label referring to what is the best approach to manage resistance. We also reinforce that with our advertising. We try to address resistance in our informational sheets, as well.

RAINBOLT: The best way is to offer multiple tools that are effective. If a grower is in a tough situation and only has one effective fungicide, they may be forced to repeatedly use the product in order to save their crop. One important part of practicing resistance management is to understand that different trade names don’t necessarily mean a different mode of action. When developing a resistance management plan, it’s important to use fungicides that have different FRAC (Fungicide Resistance Action Committee) codes.

Q:What types of products do you have coming down the pike?

RAINBOLT: Vivando fungicide was just registered for powdery mildew control in grapes in California, and BASF is anticipating registration in other grape growing states soon. In the near future, BASF hopes to bring Xemium fungicide into both fruit and vegetable crops. It’s a new chemistry that will bring a higher level of performance to growers.

KRAUS: In the next two or four years we hope to have three or four new molecules coming out, one of which is a brand new novel mode of action. The others have a mode of action or are in a class of chemistry that already exists in the marketplace.

Q: Where do you see the disease control segment of the crop protection industry headed?

KRAUS: For growers, the biggest things for them include using maximum rates, shortening the spray interval, and making sure the equipment they are using to apply these fungicides is in very good operating order. The other thing we talk about is tank mixtures and premixtures that contain two chemistries that are of different modes of action. So if resistance is an issue on a specific disease, the second material in that mixture will actually control the resistance isolate.

RAINBOLT: It’s very positive. Our company is working hard to bring new products to fruit growers. Growers can expect innovations from BASF in the future; it’s a real focus for us.

Leave a Reply

Fruits Stories
FNV logo
CitrusPMA Announces Funding For Major Produce Marketing Program
February 26, 2015
The produce industry is getting into brand marketing in a big way. The Produce Marketing Association (PMA) has announced the launch of a new promotional campaign - FNV - designed to take a page from the marketing strategies of big-money consumer brands like Nike and Apple. Read More
GrapesWashington Winegrape Industry Announces Honors
February 26, 2015
Awards included Grower of the Year, Industry Service, Lifetime Achievement, Restaurant of the Year and Posters. Read More
GrapesSonoma Agriculture Preservation Plan Unveiled
February 26, 2015
Winegrowers’ 100-year business plan is the first of its kind in agriculture. Read More
Apples & PearsNew Plant Growth Regulator Use Expanded
February 26, 2015
Ten more states grant registrations for Fine Americas’ new Kudos PGR. Read More
Apples & PearsFrom The Road: IFTA Conference Day 5
February 26, 2015
Carlson lecture highlights where IFTA has been and looks to the next generation to continue the legacy. Read More
FruitsHave Faith In Science – Which Means GMOs [Opinion]
February 25, 2015
When it comes to farming, sticking with established, commonly accepted science is the way to go. Read More
Apples & PearsFrom The Road: IFTA Conference Day 4
February 25, 2015
Creating fruiting walls with mechanical hedgers can help increase light interception in the canopy, say researchers and growers. Read More
The Latest
FruitsMaximize Produce Profits By Focusing On Soil Health
February 27, 2015
Cover crops are just one of the ways you can help boost your trees’ and vines’ performance and your bottom line. Read More
FNV logo
CitrusPMA Announces Funding For Major Produce Marketing Progr…
February 26, 2015
The produce industry is getting into brand marketing in a big way. The Produce Marketing Association (PMA) has announced the launch of a new promotional campaign - FNV - designed to take a page from the marketing strategies of big-money consumer brands like Nike and Apple. Read More
FruitsHave Faith In Science – Which Means GMOs [Opinion…
February 25, 2015
When it comes to farming, sticking with established, commonly accepted science is the way to go. Read More
Apples & PearsFrom The Road: IFTA Conference Day 4
February 25, 2015
Creating fruiting walls with mechanical hedgers can help increase light interception in the canopy, say researchers and growers. Read More
Food Safety“Dirty Dozen” List Authors Say Conventionally Grown Pro…
February 25, 2015
Sound science prevails and consumers are encouraged to increase consumption of fruits and vegetables. Read More
CitrusFDA, Federal Partners Develop New Method For Attributin…
February 25, 2015
Data was analyzed from nearly 1,000 outbreaks to assess which categories of foods were most responsible for making people sick. Read More
CitrusBiocontrols 2015: Exhibition Sneak Preview
February 25, 2015
We take a look inside the exhibit hall at the Biocontrols 2015 Conference & Tradeshow. Read More
CitrusNew App Helps Identify Insects, Diseases, And Nutrient …
February 24, 2015
Spensa Technologies launches app that helps growers take control of pests and improve soil nutrients. Read More
CitrusPacked Political Agenda On Tap For Florida Farmers
February 23, 2015
The Florida Fruit & Vegetable Association’s board of directors are working on a number of key issues that will be front-burner throughout 2015. Read More
Apples & PearsThe State Of Mechanical Apple Harvesting
February 23, 2015
Breakthroughs in mechanization have been a long time coming, but recent advances combining the skills of both people and machines are bringing efficiencies to orchards of all sizes. Read More
Apples & PearsOn The Road With IFTA: Conference Day 1
February 21, 2015
Honeycrisp ― and the delicate balance between quality and profitability ― are the preconference workshop focus at this year's IFTA Conference. Read More
CitrusWest Coast Governors Call For End To Port Labor Impasse
February 19, 2015
U.S. Secretary of Labor Thomas Perez helps mediate discussions between dockworkers and port operators. Read More
CitrusCompanion Biological Fungicide Now OMRI Listed
February 19, 2015
The biological fungicide from Growth Products is now registered for use in organic production. Read More
Crop ProtectionFMC Launches Biological Fungicide With New Mode Of Acti…
February 18, 2015
The broad spectrum fungicide, Fracture, is labeled for prevention and control of powdery mildew, botrytis, and brown rot blossom blight. Read More
CitrusNew Desalination Technology May Be The Answer To Califo…
February 18, 2015
Researchers plan to address concerns with a process that will examine ways to turn seawater into drinkable water. Read More
David Holden
CitrusBiopesticides, Biostimulants Show Results In Fruits And…
February 18, 2015
From biostimulants in celery and avocado to biopesticides in citrus and strawberries, consultant David Holden conducts in-the-field research that attests to the effectiveness of biocontrols. Read More
CitrusMegadrought In The West Predicted By End Of The Century
February 18, 2015
Lowering greenhouse gases will reduce risk, scientists say. Read More
FruitsSeed Industry Is Breeding A Win-Win For Farmers, Consum…
February 14, 2015
Florida Grower editor Frank Giles says all should marvel at the technology being used to feed the growing world population with healthy produce. Read More