A study by independent research organisation Cesar Pty Ltd reaffirms other studies that found BioGene’s Flavocide has “minimal impact on beneficial insects”.
Bio-Gene said the latest study, in arthropods, complemented a study reported on last month that found Flavocide was relatively safe around bees.
Cesar director Dr Paul Umina reported on the anthropod study, saying: “These results indicate that at the rates tested Flavocide is less toxic to beneficial insects than a commonly used insecticide.”
Bio-Gene research and development executive director Peter May said: “The company is very encouraged by these results.
“This further validates observations in field studies, notably a rice study with Flavocide in Thailand, where observations were made indicating that Flavocide treatment had minimal impact on the presence of predatory and parasitic beneficial insects in the crop,” he said.
Cesar’s anthropod study was conducted in a laboratory setting and compared Flavocide to the pyrethroid insecticide bifenthrin, finding Flavocide was in a “softer class” of chemistry.
Bifenthrin was toxic to the four tested beneficial species — the predatory ladybird, green lacewing, the parasitic wasp and the predatory mite.
Flavocide meanwhile, did not affect the predatory ladybird and green lacewing larvae, and only resulted in a low level of toxicity in the more rarely found predatory mite and parasitic wasp.
Bio-Gene plans to take the product into more field studies to assess its effects on pests, beneficial insects and rate its compatibility with integrated pest and resistance management programs.