In November, our Head of R&D, José Nolasco, was re-elected to the European Biostimulants Industry Council (EBIC) board. We sat down with him to get his thoughts on the re-election, the implementation of the new EU Fertilising Products Regulation, and the future of biostimulants and our industry.
First of all, I am personally very proud to have been a member of the EBIC Board for the last two years. In 2011, Tradecorp joined EBIC as one of the 11 founding member companies and we have been actively involved from the beginning, whether it be working on a committee or supporting various initiatives and events. I initially ran for the board because we felt that Tradecorp could contribute even more from a strategic perspective, and I was fortunate to be elected.
EBIC has played a fundamental and strategic role in the biostimulant market, especially during the last years as Europe’s – and the world’s – focus has turned towards sustainable agriculture. EBIC is not only influential at a regulatory level, but it has also helped to encourage collaboration across the industry to work towards a healthier and more sustainable future for agriculture.
It is a privilege to be re-elected for the next two years as Director-at-large and I am committed to collaborating and working hard with the rest of the Board members to achieve EBIC’s goals and overcome our collective industry challenges.
As the Board, we do play an important role in EBIC’s strategic direction, but the inclusion of biostimulants in the FPR was the result of hard work across all parts of the Council. Not least, the special role of the committees and work groups that are focused on the implementation of EBIC’s defined strategy. So, this success was truly a collective one.
Beyond the achievement related to the FPR, we have certainly seen other great successes and significant advances for the market such as the reputation of the plant biostimulants industry as serious and ethical, and practical advantages for the industry such as a better understanding of the new requirements and new opportunities granted by the FPR as the inclusion of new genera of microorganisms or the multiple-use principle, among others. All these successes have been achieved through EBIC by a multicultural group of people and companies to create positive impact in the agricultural industry and the biostimulant sector.
EBIC’s role has been crucial for the future of the biostimulant market and the mission of ensuring that biostimulant technologies are valued as an integral part of sustainable agriculture, while securing a favorable regulatory framework for biosolutions.
In 2023, I expect there are a few trends that will continue, such as a growing global biostimulant market and an emphasis on innovation within the industry. The challenge will be working to address these trends from a regulatory perspective as well. For example, we are seeing increasing interest in the use of micro-organisms to promote soil health and sustainable agriculture. As this is uncharted territory, it is very important to set up a clear mechanism and establish guidelines on a feasible data requirement for adding new micro-organisms in the regulations to encourage innovation.
EBIC is assuming the role as an opinion leader and can lead to take the good things from Europe and promote them in other geographies.
At Tradecorp, we see plant biostimulants playing a major role in alleviating the food security crisis and providing an answer to a fertilizer shortage, like we are seeing in Europe at the moment. We are very engaged with the plant biostimulants industry´s strategic leadership. EBIC’s job as an industry organization is to promote biostimulants as an innovative and essential tool to help solve some of the major global challenges that we face, and as a non-negotiable for sustainable agriculture. Therefore, our strategy is based on both engagement and implementation to encourage both ‘farm’ and ‘fork’ stakeholders can integrate plant biostimulants as a useful and relevant tool to high-priority, high-level policy and societal issues.
Congrats for your re-election, José!