MSOB: Using Heat-Killed Bacterium Against NOW

Brian German Industry, Making Sense of Biologicals

Heat-Killed Bacterium

Biologicals play an important role in keeping orchards safe from navel orangeworm (NOW) damage. With a narrow variety of insecticides registered for NOW, adding a biological material to pest management programs helps slow resistance. Senior Product Development Manager for Marrone Bio Innovations, Dr. Melissa O’Neal said that their heat-killed bacterium product Venerate XC has been shown to be effective. The material is based on the spent fermentation solids of heat-killed Burkholderia rinojensis strain A396.

Containing no living compounds which could interfere with other live biologicals, the material causes feeding interference resulting in NOW mortality through ingestion. O’Neal explained that it is not the Burkholderia itself, but rather the heat-killed bacterium produced through the fermentation process that is where the material gets its efficacy. “The bacteria are fed various things during their life cycle. they live, reproduce and produce compounds. And then at some point, there is a heat killing of that whole entire brew. So the temperature is raised, all the bacteria are killed and the compounds that they had produced during their life cycle remain,” 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