Nematodes caused farmers an estimated annual yield loss of more than $100 billion worldwide. Nematodes are parasites that live off the fruits and vegetables humans rely on for food, they are invisible to the naked eye, making it difficult for farmers to know that they have even been attacked until it is too late.
One out of every ten tomatoes, cucumbers, melons, okra plants, potatoes, and many more species never make it out of the field as a result of complete destruction by nematodes, also known as ringworms and large percentage of infected crop is too damaged to sell.
The new solution came from Adama Agricultural Solutions, Nimitz, Adama’s brand name for a nematicide (nematode killer) based on a newly-discovered molecule called fluensulfone, will get rid of the most common nematodes without the use of heavy chemicals, therefore it’s is less hazardous to the environment than other solution. The research of over 6 years was conducted 21 countries to confirm its efficacy, intensive development and testing was done in the lab, in greenhouses, field trials or semi-commercial trials, Nimitz has consistently shown that it is a better nematicide than other commercially available products.
Nimitz’s was discovered by Japanese researchers in 2006, and since then Adama began developing it for commercial agricultural use.
Tests show that Nimitz can improve crop yields by as much as 30%, and the company expects that figure to rise as the product is further developed.
Unlike nematicides currently in use, which can do no more than freeze the behavior of the bugs while they are exposed to the chemicals, Nimitz actually kills them, the US Environmental Protection Agency confirmed it .
It also is quickly washed away by rain or irrigation when its job is done, and is nontoxic to food and water ecosystems. Within 1 hour of contact, target nematodes cease feeding and quickly become paralyzed, dying altogether within 24-72 hours of application. It affects only nematodes, with no effect on plants, animals, or other organisms in an environment.
A 2014 study in the journal Pesticide Biochemistry and Physiology said that “fluensulfone has pleiotropic actions and inhibits development, egg-laying, egg-hatching, feeding and locomotion. In the case of feeding and locomotion, an early excitation precedes the gross inhibition. The chemical, according to the study, essentially causes worms to starve themselves to death, triggering an internal mechanism that makes them to away from food.