Innovation through research and experimentation made possible the creation of Org Fung, a highly efficient biopesticide that has better and faster results than traditionally pesticides.
Maria Fernanda Castorena Elizondo
Victor Campo Aguirre
Erick Ruben Calahorra Mejia
EGADE Business School Tecnologico de Monterrey
The product is a new quinone-based bio-pesticide made from chaparral (Larrea tridentata) extracts. It is obtained from aqueous extracts of the endemic plant from the Mexican desert known as chaparral or creosote bush. This innovation emerged thanks to a new process to obtain a unique formulation that consists of transforming complex organic compounds called polyphenols, derived from aqueous chaparral extracts, into biomolecules known as quinones which have high antimicrobial properties. These quinones had been tested with a wide variety of fungus and bacteria that mainly affect the crops.The main goal of the team led by Juan Osuna, CEO of Biomin and innovation leader, was to create a solution to the abuse of chemical pesticides. The pesticides had caused a very important detrimental impact on the environment by affecting soil fertility, water hardness and several diseases for the people in charge of handling this highly toxic pesticides in the crops.
Juan´s team created this product by trial and error until they found the proper method to create the quinones in an aqueous formula in order to have zero residue during the application of it in the crops.
This innovation at first stages was by accident this is because they were manufacturing another product but this product was changing its color so they were looking for a natural conservative in order to maintain the other product the way it was supposed to be but when they add the chaparral extract saw that it changed of color even more and found very high concentration of the chaparral extract. At this stage they knew that it might be a chance to get a highly concentrated extract from the chaparral extract without the need of using chemicals or alcohol, but water with a several of biologic reactions of the compound, this idea came out directly from Juan Osuna, because he knew all the properties this plant has but at that time he didn't know that there was a way to create quinones of this plant which after that accident and years of several experiments and research he and his team were able to find a way to create quinones in an aqueous form, in order to provide an holistic solution for the plague and the environmental implications of it.
Org Fung is becoming at a fast pace the most important product for the company this is because they are gaining more customers and the regular customers are getting great results from maintaining their crops healthy, and also is cheaper than other products with more effective results.
It is important to mention that Org Fung is non toxic for humans which the people on the fields in charge of the application of it into the crops are safer than ever before and reducing time for the application of Org Fung. Also Org Fung is a very kind product because it only attacks fungus and bacteria, therefore it is not nocive for animals and because its aqueous form it doesn't leave any residue which is great for the environment too enhancing a more responsible way to use land and prevent a detriment of the soil fertility.
Because the business was the first in develop this product and had previous experience developing bioproducts, the company has the competitive advantage versus other producers in the industry to use more efficiently its raw material, through experienced processes and the formulation allows them to produce 25 liters of product when others make 1 liters. The company has a great opportunity to invest in new equipment to meet the highly growing demand for the product.
The ability of the company to exploit its own capabilities have led them to have 55% of margin with the product they are innovating while offering to the customers at a price 10x cheaper than other chemical-based products that are more harmful for the people and environment.
There is high expansion potential for the OrgFung as the diseases the crops experience in Mexico are the same they experience in China, currently the biggest pineapple exporter in Mexico is shipping product to Europe so fruits that have been treated with OrgFung are currently meeting the European health standards. Currently several countries in Central America as Peru and Guatemala are testing the product in vegetables.
As the population continues to grow and demands more food, the agriculture industry requires to continue producing to meet the high demand. In order to meet the growing demand for food in a sustainable way, this innovation has an international organic certificate by the Organic Materials Review Institute, an institute through which the United States is validating that the processes and raw materials used in this product are totally friendly to the environment.
This product (OrgFung) can be used in organic agriculture as well as in conventional agriculture, but one of the main benefits for the environment is the lack of emission of chemical residues by controlling diseases in the crops.
For example, chemical residues have been found even in Antarctica, those are chemical waste products are not biodegradable, they take thousands of years like plastic. We do not dimension the impact until we see it. So, we don't see a chemical molecule in the soil, in the air, in the water as if you saw a plastic bottle. So maybe the impact is not so visible, but it is very serious because those molecules are staying in the environment and the truth is that we do not have idea of how they can affect us both to the environment and the human health.
Juan Osuna, Chief Executive Operator
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Saltillo, Coahuila de Zaragoza, MX
Business Website: http://bioamin.com.mx/
Year Founded: 2008
Number of Employees: 11 to 50
Biotechnology company focused on research, development and manufacturing of organic, botanic and biological solutions for the most difficult needs of the agroindustry, which are control of plague, maximize production and be environmentally friendly in order to plant again in the same land.