As we move into an era where traditional agrochemical pesticides applied to seed are becoming less widely available, Frontier Agriculture’s David Waite believes growers and their advisors are going to seek more natural nutrient and growth promotion solutions to help the plant develop into a healthy seedling – and Newton is a welcome addition to the armoury. “The truth is we need to find new and innovative solutions for growers to deal with pests and diseases. The armoury of available products is getting less and less.”

While there are new products coming onto the market at the moment, not many seem to be getting seed treatment approval, says David, and he reckons this is due to the blanket approach. “However, in my mind, we are far better to put a small amount of treatment onto the seed to help it deal with whatever problems it may face, rather than waiting for something to become an issue and then trying to resolve it.”

“In simplistic terms, it is like taking a vitamin and nutrient supplement to help stave off illness and disease.”

Interagro’s new biostimulant seed treatment, Newton, has the proven ability to boost both seed health and yield, and after dabbling with it this spring, David says he has noted some positive results.

“Early indications last spring seemed to indicate that Newton may increase the speed of establishment and promote faster early growth. A stronger seedling can resist disease and pest attack better than a weaker plant.”

“We have one customer, just south of Perth, that has trialled it on some spring barley this year and you could visibly see a line of difference across the field. The Newton-treated crop came up a whole day earlier than the standard treatment, so it is a very interesting and exciting time to explore its full potential.”