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use biopesticides? The US Environmental
Protection Agency (EPA) identifies four major reasons for developing,
promoting and using biopesticides, stating that:
One of the implications here, yet to be investigated fully, is that biopesticides may have important roles where chemical agents are ineffective or where resistance has developed. The term "Biopesticide" is often used broadly: with the US EPA including naturally occurring substances that control pests (biochemical pesticides including semiochemicals), micro-organisms that control pests (microbial pesticides), and pesticidal substances produced by plants containing added genetic material (Plant-Incorporated Protectants) or PIPs. This broad definition is shared in Len Copping's Manual of Biocontrol Agents: a comprehensive review of available biopesticide products in which macro-organisms (predatory insects, parasitoids etc.) are also included. Specific microbial control agents, are usually used with familiar pesticide application methods, and have a limited period of activity afterwards.
On these pages we focus on the exploitation of mycopesticides: biopesticides based on agents which typically conform to the latter, stricter definition of a biopesticide. We specifically focus on delivery systems, using examples such as the 'GreenMuscle' mycoinsecticide, formulations of Trichoderma for cocoa disease control and entomopathogenic nematodes.
Biopesticides, useful links: