Seed World

Biofungicide for Cannabis Receives First Approval

A biofungicide has received the first approval for indoor and outdoor use on cannabis and hemp in Canada.

Marrone Bio Innovations (MBI) announced that REGALIA MAXX biofungicide, which is currently available for use on several other crops in Canada, should soon be able to be used on both high-THC and low-THC cannabis in Canada.

Cannabis and hemp have been relatively small crops in Canada until lifestyle cannabis was approved in 2018. According to Health Canada, 77,800 acres of hemp were grown in 2018, valued at an estimated US$50 million. And while 2019 acres are still being compiled, Canada Health has reported a 51% increase in licenses issued to grow hemp across Canada in 2019.

The majority of Canadian cannabis and hemp acres have been certified organic, as growers have been forced to meet strict standards of a highly regulated industry. There have been limited options to control diseases and insects and it is only recently that a few select crop protection products have been approved for use on hemp or cannabis, including REGALIA MAXX.

The Ontario Ministry of Agriculture, Food & Rural Affairs agreed to sponsor MBI’s application for a User Requested Minor Use Label Expansion (URMULE) for REGALIA MAXX’s use on cannabis and hemp in April. Approval by Health Canada/Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) is anticipated in July 2020.