UPLB-BIOTECH Biofertilizers reviewed for potential mass production

The DA-Bureau of Agricultural Research, along with corn experts, convened in a meeting to discuss the availability and mass production possibilities of biofertilizers developed by University of the Philippines Los Baños -National Institute of Molecular Biology and Biotechnology (BIOTECH) on 18 January 2023 via Google Meet.

The focus of the discussion centered on assessing the feasibility and potential mass production of developed biofertilizers, such as K-Solb, Maizinc, Vamri, and Bioplasma. These biofertilizers, produced through a DA-BAR funded project, address nutrient deficiency problems and diseases in crops, such as corn and cassava. All three fertilizers, except Maizinc, have already been registered with the Fertilizer and Pesticide Authority.

Project leader and university researcher, Robert A. Nepomucheno, said that UPLB-Biotech has already submitted a proposal for the mass production of Maizinc and K-SolB. He also highlighted the interventions contained in their proposal.

He also mentioned that the established mixing plants established in DA-Regional Field Offices (RFOs) can consider mass-producing the biofertilizers.

Artemio M. Salazar, one of the corn experts, has recommended that the biofertilizers undergo the Site-Specific Nutrient Management approach (SSNM) in DA-RFOs to gather detailed data on their effectiveness and compatibility. SSNM is a plant-based approach that can provide guidelines for the effective utilization of Nitrogen, Phosphorus, and Potassium, which are among the main functions of the developed biofertilizers.

…Kapag nakita na natin yung effectivity niya through SSNM, ilalagay naman natin sa mga existing techno-demos ng DA Operations, pagkatapos ilalagay na natin sa mga model farm,” said Salazar.

A biocompatibility study between these biofertilizers was also recommended by the corn experts to determine if users can use these biofertilizers simultaneously.

During the evaluation of the products, corn experts Salazar and Candido Damo, agreed with DA-BAR focals to delve into the potential establishment of policies governing the commercialization and utilization of DA-BAR funded projects, including these biofertilizers from BIOTECH. A follow up meeting is  scheduled in February 2024 to discuss the matter. (### Alexis B. del Mar)