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Surround WP Crop Protectant Protects Grapes From Glassy-Winged Sharpshooters in Kern County, California Pilot Project.

Business/Food and Beverage Editors

ISELIN, N.J.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Oct. 29, 2001

Surround(R) WP crop protectant from Engelhard Corporation demonstrated the ability to protect crops from the glassy-winged sharpshooter (GWSS) in the USDA-APHIS/UC-Kern County Cooperative Extension Pilot Project for GWSS control in Kern County, CA according to a recently released report.

GWSS is the most aggressive vector of the economically devastating Pierce's Disease that can destroy grapevines.

"Growers have already applied over 10,000 acre-treatments post-harvest this season," said Robin Matson, Sales and Technical Service Manager for Engelhard. "Sharpshooters stop feeding on Surround-treated vines. Bottom line is -- if they don't feed, they cannot vector Pierce's Disease."

The study showed huge reductions of visits by adult GWSS to the treated vines, and egg lay was reduced by 99% on vines that had followed the repeat-treatment prescription with Surround.

Researchers at the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA-APHIS), who are responsible for the pilot project, prevented GWSS movement from citrus into vineyards by treating vineyards adjacent to infested citrus with Surround. Conventional chemical insecticide treatments were made to citrus in early March to reduce GWSS populations before they could move into vineyards. However, remaining GWSS started to move as vines broke dormancy later in March, infesting untreated vines but avoiding vines protected by Surround. In addition, vineyard blocks sprayed with Surround that had become infested with sharpshooters prior to the Surround applications saw pest counts reduced virtually to zero.

The pilot project used Surround in vineyards at 25 pounds in 50 to 70 gallons of water per acre, applied at 2-week intervals from bud break through bloom. It is recommended to increase the rate and volume later in the season to 25 to 37.5 lbs. in 75 to 125 gallons of water.

A 2000 study and a confirming 2001 study by Dr. Reed Kirkland of Bio Research of Fresno, CA showed equally powerful control of GWSS in lemon groves. These studies showed that Surround is equal or superior to a leading systemic insecticide and superior to an organophosphate "knockdown" insecticide.

Surround also suppresses the blue-green and red-headed sharpshooters, which, although not as aggressive as the GWSS, are also vectors for Pierce's Disease. In western states, Surround gives economic suppression of grape and variegated leafhoppers and thrips, and in eastern states of Japanese beetles, leafhoppers, leafrollers, rose chafers and thrips.

Surround also protects against berry sunburn and helps maintain berry color. Numerous studies have shown equal to improved juice quality, in particular, increased brix count in red grapes.

Surround crop protectant forms a barrier film that acts as a broad-spectrum agricultural crop protectant for reducing damage from various insect pests. The film can enhance growth and protect against sunburn and heat stress. Over 200,000 acre-treatments of Surround have been applied, and Surround has become the standard for pear psylla control. It is also used heavily in apples for sunburn reduction and summer insects.

Surround is listed by the Organic Materials Review Institute (OMRI) for use in organic production and is fully registered by US EPA who granted it an exemption from the requirement of a tolerance for residues.

Engelhard Corporation is a surface and materials science company that develops technologies to improve customers' products and processes. A Fortune 500 company, Engelhard is a world-leading provider of technologies for environmental, process, appearance and performance applications. For more information, visit Engelhard on the Internet at www.surround.engelhard.com.

Editorial Note: A backgrounder on Surround(R)crop protectant and pictures are available.
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Date:Oct 29, 2001
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