Quality Control of Biological Control

Unlike chemical insecticides, biological control products often contain a living organism. These living organisms are typically reared on artificial diets in controlled environments to sustain a high quality consistent product. However, rearing living organisms is a lot more finicky than mixing chemicals to make a chemical insecticide. The size of the organism, the female to male ratio, their lifespan, and rate of release can all affect the efficacy of the biological control.  Although the biocontrol companies do some quality control work on their end, the product may decrease in quality through shipment. That’s why it is encouraged that growers do a quality control check on their biological controls to ensure that they’ve received a quality product.

A research scientist, Dr. Rose Buitenhuis, from the Vineland Research and Innovation Center has put together a nifty publication to help growers assess their biological control products:

Grower Guide: Quality Assurance of Biocontrol Products

The materials required to perform quality control checks on the farm are relatively accessible and easy to use. By following this guide, you can make sure your investment in your biological control products is not put to waste!

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