Biostimulants & Agriculture

Biostimulants are substances that promote the growth and development of plants, also improving its metabolism. That makes plants more resistant to adverse conditions, like abiotic o biotic stress, water stress, pests or diseases.

Vegetable biostimulants or phytostimulants independently of its nutrient content, may contain substances, compounds and microorganisms whose functional use, when applied to plants or the rhizosphere, cause an improvement in crop development, vigor, yield and quality by stimulating natural processes that benefit the growth and biotic/abiotic responses.

Biostimulants use in agriculture is increasing and could help solving the inefficiencies that remain in today’s agriculture, despite crop production improved practices.

> Biostimulants in detail

The vast majority of the categories known as biestimulants (humic and fulvic acids, amino acids , seaweed extracts…) can present today a battery of in vitro assays, outdoors and – increasingly, molecular analysis of its impact on plants which shows its help fighting against abiotic and biotic stress in plants. Humic multiyear trials are demonstrating its efficacy, and there are different seaweed extract trials designed to combat abiotic stress (drought or frost, for example) and if formulated in different ways, could be used to induce plant defense.

However, we must not forget that although these compounds work, timing , dose, and specificity of each crop is a key point when measuring its impact. Not all of these products are the same, and it is essential to understand how and when to apply the doses… It has been shown that the use of a compound modifies the balance, composition and effectiveness of all others, being essential to have expert advice for proper application and satisfactory results.IDEAGRO works closely with farmers and producers to obtain the best possible results.

New trials, testing and studies on the use of microorganisms (mainly bacteria and fungi) as bistimulants are being developed. Here, human knowledge faces unknown areas and there is no doubt that biostimulants market will evolve and mark agriculture conversation in the coming years.

> Importance of this sector in Europe

Biostimulants market value is estimated between 200-400 M€, with an annual growth of over 10% and annual investment in research and development between 3 and 10% of turnover.

The biostimulants are increasingly used in agricultural production worldwide and can contribute effectively to meet the challenge posed by the continuous increase of food demand by the world population, therefore, from IDEAGRO, we are currently working on various lines in relation to biostimulants and its application:

 Resistance inductors: natural substances which, when applied to plants proactively help us reducing the incidence of pests and diseases. To quantify the effect we perform trials and measurements of phytoalexins and related enzyme activity for each crop and phase.

Seaweed extracts as root growth promoters, stimulate the development and growth of plants and serve as auxins and cytokinins precursors.

 Yucca extract: promotes quicker germination of seeds, faster development and deeper roots development. Also increases plant resistance to environmental stress and adverse conditions.

Phosphorus and potassium solubilizing bacteria help reducing the use of chemical fertilizers and to enhance and restore soil microbiological activity .

Environmental nitrogen fixing bacteria help reducing the use of nitrogen fertilizers and facilitate their uptake by plants. The use of the aforementioned bacteria reduce eutrophication and nitrate pollution of groundwater .

From IDEAGRO, we are continuously researching and working in order to keep innovating and seeking solutions to optimize agricultural production of our farmers in a more sustainable and profitable way.