In Focus: Three Questions With Sarah Reiter

Editor’s Note: Sarah Reiter is the director of global marketing for AgraQuest, overseeing all of AgraQuest’s brands in all markets. She is also responsible for launching new products and expanding existing products into new markets. AgraQuest focuses on discovering, developing, manufacturing, and marketing highly effective biological and low-chemical pest, disease control, and yield enhancing products for agriculture.

1. Florida Grower (FLG):Requiem insecticide was recently registered in Florida. What are some key benefits of this product?

Sarah Reiter: Requiem is a highly effective insecticide for the control of key vegetable, fruit, and tree pests with a unique mode of action based on a synergistic suite of compounds extracted from the plant Chenopodium ambrosioides. Requiem has demonstrated control of whiteflies, aphids, mites, thrips, and other pests in more than 600 trials and grower demonstrations. Requiem delivers contact control of most stages of pests — from eggs to adults. It has negligible effects on beneficial insects like minute pirate bugs, bees, or lady beetles. It is exempt from residue tolerances and is flexibly labeled with 0-day pre-harvest interval and 4-hour restricted entry interval.

Requiem is an excellent example of using the power of nature to meet grower needs. Over the past several years, the western flower thrips (WFT) has emerged as a key pest in central and south Florida. Unable to control this thrips species, pepper producers have sustained significant crop losses. UF/IFAS entomologists, led by Dr. Joe Funderburk, have been promoting integrated pest management (IPM) strategies, including the use of beneficial insects, as the solution. An integral part of their IPM strategy is the need for an insecticide active on WFT but with low impact on minute pirate bug, a key beneficial insect. The registration of Requiem in Florida in January came at a good time and was quickly integrated into thrips control programs on peppers. AgraQuest will continue to support UF/IFAS’ efforts in promoting IPM on the farm in Florida.

2. FLG: Discuss how we can tap into the natural world to develop crop production products that will enhance yields and productivity.

Reiter: Natural products have long been the source of many of the most widely used crop chemical solutions. Pyrethroid insecticides, for instance, originated from pyrethrums extracted from chrysanthemums. Strobilurin fungicides are based on an ingredient originally extracted from a fungus. Bt insecticides, perhaps the most widely used biopesticides, are microbial, produced by bacteria.

AgraQuest is redefining the agrochemical industry with the introduction of effective, innovative, and environmentally responsible pest and disease control products and services. AgraQuest is the premier supplier of proprietary, data-driven biological and low-chemical technology, and unlike many conventional pesticides which are made using petroleum-based or other synthetic chemicals, AgraQuest’s products are produced from renewable, bio-based materials.

3. FLG: Is it important for these types of natural products to work along with a plant’s own internal mechanisms to boost defense and/or productivity?

Reiter: It’s important to recognize that natural products are themselves chemistry. Some of the chemistry acts directly on targets; some of the chemistry works within the plant to up-regulate self defense mechanisms. Take Serenade, our broad spectrum fungicide, for example. Serenade controls pathogens through a combination of four distinct levels of activity, which are listed below.

1. As a contact fungicide: The lipopeptide chemistry in Serenade (produced by its Bacillus subtilis strain QST 713 cells during fermentation) is directly fungicidal, puncturing holes in the membranes of fungal cells. The cell contents leak out and the fungus dies.

2. As a contact bactericide: Serenade also contains anti-bacterial chemistry which prevents the cell walls of bacteria from forming.

3. Through systemic response: Serenade triggers plant disease resistance and abiotic stress resistance.

4. Through growth promotion: Compounds in Serenade induce plant growth.

Leave a Reply

Featured Stories
CitrusFederal Judge Blocks Clean Water Rule
August 28, 2015
  According to RISE (Responsible Industry For A Sound Environment), a federal judge in North Dakota has blocked implementation of Read More
PotatoesUSDA Deregulates Late Blight-Resistant Genetically Engineered Potato
August 28, 2015
Agency cites no significant impact of special spud developed by J.R. Simplot. Read More
Food SafetyLawmakers Urge FDA To Help Small Farms With FSMA Compliance
August 28, 2015
Letter from members of Congress asks FDA to expedite assistance and training for small producers. Read More
FruitsSustainable Options For Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Control
August 28, 2015
The brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB), unfortunately, is here to stay. Found in the U.S. in the late 1990s, this Read More
FruitsA Breakthrough In Biotechnology And The Future Of The Fruit Industry
August 28, 2015
Researchers from California and Sweden have recently been honored for a discovery that could have big implications for the fruit Read More
FruitsWhat Makes A Flavorful Fruit?
August 28, 2015
These days, U.S. consumers are increasingly demanding good-tasting fruit and the industry is responding. However, there remains room for improvement Read More
FruitsMedfly Find Prompts Quarantine In Portion Of San Diego County
August 28, 2015
A portion of San Diego County has been placed under quarantine for the Mediterranean fruit fly (medfly) following the detection Read More
Golden Rice
CitrusAnti-GMO-Fueled Threats Force Reallocation Of Biotech Education Funds
August 27, 2015
University of Florida officials say plans are to re-allocate a donation intended to improve the public’s understanding of science after Read More
ProductionNew Vegetable Grafting Technique Reduces Labor
August 27, 2015
Researchers patent a process to eliminate rootstock with the goal of making grafting more affordable in the U.S. Read More
money
CitrusMonsanto Drops Current Bid For Syngenta Acquisition
August 27, 2015
Even with a revised proposal that sweetened the pot to $46.2 billion, financial expectations still fall flat. Read More
The Latest
CitrusFederal Judge Blocks Clean Water Rule
August 28, 2015
  According to RISE (Responsible Industry For A Sound Environment), a federal judge in North Dakota has blocked implementation of Read More
PotatoesUSDA Deregulates Late Blight-Resistant Genetically Engi…
August 28, 2015
Agency cites no significant impact of special spud developed by J.R. Simplot. Read More
Food SafetyLawmakers Urge FDA To Help Small Farms With FSMA Compli…
August 28, 2015
Letter from members of Congress asks FDA to expedite assistance and training for small producers. Read More
FruitsSustainable Options For Brown Marmorated Stink Bug Cont…
August 28, 2015
The brown marmorated stink bug (BMSB), unfortunately, is here to stay. Found in the U.S. in the late 1990s, this Read More
FruitsA Breakthrough In Biotechnology And The Future Of The F…
August 28, 2015
Researchers from California and Sweden have recently been honored for a discovery that could have big implications for the fruit Read More
FruitsWhat Makes A Flavorful Fruit?
August 28, 2015
These days, U.S. consumers are increasingly demanding good-tasting fruit and the industry is responding. However, there remains room for improvement Read More
FruitsMedfly Find Prompts Quarantine In Portion Of San Diego …
August 28, 2015
A portion of San Diego County has been placed under quarantine for the Mediterranean fruit fly (medfly) following the detection Read More
Golden Rice
CitrusAnti-GMO-Fueled Threats Force Reallocation Of Biotech E…
August 27, 2015
University of Florida officials say plans are to re-allocate a donation intended to improve the public’s understanding of science after Read More
ProductionNew Vegetable Grafting Technique Reduces Labor
August 27, 2015
Researchers patent a process to eliminate rootstock with the goal of making grafting more affordable in the U.S. Read More
money
CitrusMonsanto Drops Current Bid For Syngenta Acquisition
August 27, 2015
Even with a revised proposal that sweetened the pot to $46.2 billion, financial expectations still fall flat. Read More
Jim McFerson
Apples & PearsNew Director At Washington Fruit Research Center Has Fa…
August 27, 2015
Jim McFerson, former manager at the Washington Tree Fruit Research Commission, takes over at the Washington State University Tree Fruit Research and Extension Center. Read More
Apples & PearsIt’s Been A Tough Year For Pacific Northwest Grow…
August 27, 2015
So far, 2015 is not treating the Pacific Northwest tree fruit industry all that well. We knew the record apple Read More
Insect & Disease UpdateCalifornia’s Citrus Growers Face More Challenges Than H…
August 27, 2015
As a kid growing up we all remember the arrival of Barnum & Bailey’s circus. The ads, the posters, the Read More
Leafy VegetablesThe Latest Vegetable Varieties For Covered Production
August 27, 2015
Check out cucumber, pepper and tomato offerings available from DeRuiter, Johnny’s Selected Seeds, Rijk Zwaan, and Syngenta. The greenhouse varieties are Read More
Leafy VegetablesIceberg Lettuce Prices Up In California’s Abnormal Weat…
August 26, 2015
Price may be up but the heat and humidity are diminishing quality. Read More
Postharvest HandlingTechnology Helping To Bring That “Fresh-Picked…
August 26, 2015
Imagine what it’s like to pick a fresh peach off of a tree in an orchard. The smell, the texture Read More
FruitsDo You Have #FarmFans? If Not, You Should
August 26, 2015
Your guests are already live tweeting their experiences of visiting your farm. Why not turn this into a social experience to promote your business? Read More
NutsAlmonds Contribute Little To Carbon Emissions
August 25, 2015
Compared to other nutrient-dense foods, the carbon footprint of almonds is small. Read More