MSOB: Using Biofungicides to Help Manage Resistance

Brian German Industry, Making Sense of Biologicals

Biostimulant Products

Fungicide resistance can create several short-term and long-term issues for growers, with yield and quality losses. Biofungicides, and their novel FRAC groupings, offer growers another tool that can help manage resistance. Senior Product Development Manager for Marrone Bio Innovations, Dr. Melissa O’Neal said that there are three classes of biofungicides that are currently recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency.

“The first group is biochemical fungicides which are naturally occurring substances. The second group is microbial fungicides which are, by the name, based on microorganisms that control pests,” O’Neal explains. “The third group is plant-incorporated protectants, or PIPs. These are a bit less common with fungicides, but they are fungicidal substances produced by plants containing added genetic material like GMOs. Some of those don’t fall under OMRI certified, so it’s always important to check the labels.”

Limiting applications of materials encountering resistance and incorporating biofungicides with varying modes of action can be a critical component of management. While biological options are predominately available as a preventative measure, combining appropriate materials can be effective in high-pressure situations. “We’ve seen in studies that this often offers a greater degree of control through these combinations than is realized by applying the partners alone. So that’s another way to use biologicals within a program within IPM,” said O’Neal.

Listen to the full episode with Dr. Melissa O’Neal below.

‘Making Sense of Biologicals’ is a series from AgNet West that dives into various topics with unbiased experts in the field of biologics to help the industry better understand the product category.

This episode of Making Sense of Biologicals is made possible by Marrone Bio Innovations, leading the movement to environmentally sustainable farming practices through the discovery, development and sale of innovative biological products for crop protection, crop health and crop nutrition. Marrone Bio’s portfolio of 18 products helps a wide range of growers – from row crops and fruits and vegetables to tree nuts, vines, and greenhouse production – operate more sustainably while increasing their return on investment. For educational webinars and biological IPM programs, visit