Indian AgriTech and researchers welcome national launch of World BioProtection Forum
9th December 2019
The WBF launches in India today, with the goal of furthering innovation and collaboration within the bioprotection (biopesticides) market and speeding the path to commercialisation. India is a leading player on the global AgriTech market, and the second largest producer of fruits and vegetables in the world. Therefore, India is expected to provide a major membership hub for the WBF.
Leveraging new technologies and an extensive global network of academics, companies, institutions and advisers, the WBF aims to:
- Build bridges between academia and industry by encouraging R&D collaboration
- Encourage the development of next-generation formulation and delivery systems
- Educate innovators and entrepreneurs about raising investment for start-ups and SMEs, while working to create more general investor interest in this sector
- Support start-ups and disruptors in attracting investment and early adopters.
Biological solutions for the control of pests and diseases is a fast-growing segment of AgriTech and offers a sustainable alternative to harmful chemical pesticides. A recent publication1 listed 46 pesticides that are banned for manufacture, import and use in India as of 31st October 2019. With the ecological impact of food production and agriculture coming under increased scrutiny, there is growing support for natural alternatives to synthetic chemical pesticides. The BioProtection sector offers effective natural alternatives and is projected to grow at a rate of more than 14%.2
Following the WBF’s launch in the UK in September 2019, today’s national launch in India takes place at the Golkonda Hotel in Hyderabad. Attendees will be treated to a programme of insightful presentations from industry leaders, covering challenges in the bioprotection sector, market penetration and commercialisation, new innovations and ongoing research.
The WBF is accountable to its members and governed by a member body chaired by Dr Minshad Ansari, Founder & CEO of Bionema, a leading biopesticide technology development company.
AgriTech experts joining the WBF become part of a community dedicated to furthering the successful development and commercialisation of biocontrol products. They receive valuable membership benefits, including a discount to attend the WBF’s annual meeting, the Biopesticide Summit.
The Biopesticide Summit, and the associated Global Biopesticide Awards, are key to achieving the goals of the WBF. More than 200 experts from 20 countries attended the first Biopesticide Summit and Awards in July 2019 in Swansea, UK. The connections established there will be developed and expanded through the WBF network, furthering research and business developments. The next Biopesticide Summit will take place on 19–20 May 2020 in Birmingham, UK.
Dr Ansari said: “A new age is dawning in AgriTech, as the BioProtection sector is finally making its mark. The sector is highly innovative, with a shared vision for industry growth. Our mission is to connect academia and industry globally to ensure successful development and commercialisation of biocontrol products.”
For information on how to apply for membership, visit: www.worldbioprotectionforum.com
WBF-India’s Executive Director, Ramachandra M Pulumati, said: “A Bio Agri revolution in the agriculture sector, specifically in biological crop protection, is taking place across the world. India has all the requisite resources to join in this race and create successes in this sector. The World BioProtection Forum is a wonderful platform to make this happen by connecting and collaborating with all stakeholders – entrepreneurs, academia, researchers and policy makers. Through these collaborations, We will derive the joy of contributing to robust business, a greener planet, healthier people and safer food. This is the perfect time to launch WBF India!”
WBF-India’s President, Mr Praharaju Laxminarayana, said: “The Indian BioProtection industry is one of the very best in the world and it is well supported by the vast biodiversity and knowledge base of companies, academia and research. We are ready to tap the global potential of Indian innovation, and look forward to the international collaborations that will take our products worldwide. This is the right time for launching the World BioProtection Forum in India, it brings together all the stakeholders for a global position. The Indian biotechnology industry is one of the most favoured investment destinations in recognition of the contributions of the Bioindustry & Research.”
1Directorate of Plant Protection, Quarantine & Storage, Ministry of Agriculture and Farmers Welfare, AgroPages, November 2019; 2Mordor Intelligence Industry Report, 2019