ADAMA is developing a new ferric-based molluscicide aimed specifically at controlling slug populations in UK conditions.
The new ferric phosphate (3%) molluscicide is being developed for use in cereals, oilseed rape, potatoes and a wide range of horticultural crops in response to the imminent loss of metaldehyde. The new slug pellets will offer several key advantages, in particular, excellent palatability and durable
“ADAMA’s new slug pellets are being developed using the same Desidro technology that made our outgoing Gusto 3 metaldehyde pellets the market-leader,” explains Melanie Wardle, Molluscicide Product Manager for ADAMA.
The Desidro manufacturing system uses a two-stage drying technique which microwaves the wet processed pellets to dry them from the inside before using a standard, convection heater to gently dry the exterior. This ensures an ideal balance between persistence and palatability, with ADAMA’s pellets proving hard enough to ensure excellent weather resistance, but also remaining palatable to slugs even when first applied.
The Desidro process also ensures each and every pellet is of a uniform size and density, thereby ensuring excellent ballistic characteristics and minimal pellet shattering for an accurate spreading pattern and baiting point density, even when applying across wide working widths.
“According to the AHDB, slug damage already costs UK farmers an estimated £100m per year,” Ms Wardle continues. “Unfortunately, the excessively wet start to 2020 is predicted to intensify the challenge this year, with soaring slug populations having the potential to decimate crops which are already ‘behind’ due to unfavourable establishment conditions.
“On top of this, the loss of metaldehyde means that, until new active ingredients are developed and approved for professional use, ferric phosphate will be the only molluscicide available to UK growers. Our technical and regulatory teams are therefore working tirelessly to bring our new ferric phosphate slug pellets to market as soon as possible so that UK growers have access to a molluscicide they know will provide long-lasting and effective levels of protection and which will retain its integrity, even in persistently wet conditions.”
Whilst a specific launch date for the new slug pellets has not yet been confirmed, growers can keep up to date with the latest news from ADAMA by subscribing to our Cereal Disease Hub or by following us at @AdamaUK_
ADAMA has also started to develop a second new molluscicide which uses a novel active ingredient. This molluscicide will also use the Desidro process to produce palatable, long-lasting slug pellets. No further details are available at present, but will be made available as soon as possible.