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Orchid Insecticide-Spray Disaster Avoidable

NZ Vermicast Products Press Release

23 September 2009


Orchid Insecticide-Spray Disaster Avoidable


The orchid insecticide-spray disaster which has come to light in the news media recently could have been avoided if a natural vermicast product had been used instead, says NZ Vermicast Products’ Managing Director, Craig Hutchinson.

“International research has repeatedly shown that vermicast products act as natural insecticides” said Mr. Hutchinson. “They reduce the damage caused by pests, and suppress pest populations.”

“These studies have been conducted on a variety of plants, with various pests such as aphids, spider mites and mealy bugs. Without exception, plant damage and pest numbers are reduced.”

Mr. Hutchinson believes this type of occurrence will focus growers’ minds on using natural solutions which don’t have the potential to destroy crops, such as NZ Vermicast Products’ liquid vermicast concentrate product, Vermisol.

“That a product has the potential to destroy crops if used incorrectly is a serious problem” he said. “Whether it’s human error or poor labeling, the risk is there and the economic consequences can be dire, as we have seen with the orchid growers who have been affected by this issue for nearly two years now.”

Without doubt, more and more professional horticulturists and agriculturalists are looking to improve and protect their crops without the use of potentially harsh chemicals. Since the release of Vermisol, Mr. Hutchinson has found that many have wanted to step back from practices which can harm their soil, the environment, and human and animal health.
“I have found a general disillusionment among growing-professionals with traditional chemical crop protection and fertilizer regimes” he said. “Sometimes their customers, who are more aware of the environmental and health issues, are driving the change.

“Sometimes the growers themselves want to incorporate more sustainable practices into their business. Or they are simply tired of being exposed to fluctuating international commodity prices and exchange rates which causes year-on-year price uncertainty.”

“These growers like the idea of a New Zealand made, natural growing solution that provides multiple plant nutrition and soil health benefits, is sustainable, and won’t cost twice as much next year as today. They also like the idea that there is no stand-down period for animal and human contact once Vermisol has been applied.”

 NZ Vermicast Products manufactures Vermisol, a liquid vermicast (i.e. worm castings) concentrate product which is used as a plant food, soil conditioner, and natural insecticide. Vermisol is manufactured in Christchurch from natural organic raw materials.

Plants benefit from Vermisol in four ways. It provides a full menu of 14 plant nutrients; it contains soil-beneficial microbes which improve soil and plant health; it contains high concentrations of humic acids which act as a slow release fertilizer; and it helps plants protect themselves against pests by improving their natural chemical defenses. 

International research has shown that vermicast products improve seed germination rates. Plants grown in vermicast products have larger root sizes, faster growth rates, more shoots and flowers, larger fruit, and are more pest resistant.


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