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Closer receives registration

Dow AgroSciences has received federal registration of its sulfoxaflor insecticide, sold under the brand name Closer, which is designed to control sap-feeding insects, such as aphids, in tree fruits and other crops. It is the only insecticide available for specialty crops that is classified in Group 4C, making it an important resistance management tool, according to Dow. It has a 12-hour reentry interval and a seven-day preharvest interval in tree fruits.

Registration in California is expected in 2015. For more information, visit the Web site www.closerinsecticide.com.

Bioinsecticide not harmful to bees

The bee toxicity warning statement has been removed from the label of the Grandevo bioinsecticide following third-party field evaluations showing that it had no detrimental effects on honeybees, according to manufacturer Marrone Bio Innovations, Inc. The study was conducted in North Carolina in 2012.

Grandevo is designed to control chewing and sucking insects and mites. Although tested extensively on nontarget organisms before its registration with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency in 2012, it was not required to be field tested with honeybees. Dr. Tim Johnson, global head of product development at Marrone Bio Innovations, said the company felt it important to do the study so it can reassure growers that the product will not harm bees. Details of the field trial are in the April 2013 issue of Bee Culture ­magazine and on Marrone Bio Innovations Web site at http:/bit.ly/10QUwFJ.

Imperial Gala sport available

Ken Mobley, general manager of Earth Source Trading, Inc., in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania, imported a new apple variety from New Zealand for the first time this year and is working with C & O Nursery in Wenatchee, Washington, to find growers interested in growing the variety in the United States.

Premier Star is an Imperial Gala sport discovered as a branch mutation at Premier Orchard near Nelson, New Zealand, in 1999. It has a solid red color rather than the stripes of Imperial. It was named in 2005 and was granted Plant Variety Registration in 2007. It received a U.S. patent last year. The variety owners say it grows like Royal Gala but is sweeter, firmer, and larger, with outstanding solid color.

For more information, contact Mobley at (717) 721-2850, e-mail kenmo@earthsourcetrading.com.

Macfrut set for September

Macfrut 2013, an international fresh produce exhibition and a major event in the Mediterranean region, will be held in Cesena, Italy, September 25-27. The event, which includes a number of symposia, attracted 800 exhibitors and 22,000 visitors last year. The Macfrut Oscar will be awarded to the best innovations in the fruit and fresh ­produce sector.

Bioherbicide patent issued

Marrone Bio Innovations, Inc., of Davis, California, has received a patent for sarmentine, the active ingredient in its new bioherbicide known as MB1-011, which is one of three herbicides the company plans to commercialize.

The company’s chemists discovered sarmentine, which was isolated from an extract of the pepper species Piper longum but has also been isolated from other Piper species. Registration applications for the active ingredient and the product formulation were submitted to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency last December. The pending registration is for control of annual and perennial grasses and broadleaf weeds in ­agriculture, turf, ornamental, home, and garden markets.

Blueline opens Cle Elum store

Blueline Equipment, Inc., an agricultural equipment dealership based in Yakima, Washington, has opened a new store at Cle Elum, Washington, near Interstate 90, eastbound exit 84, in premises previously occupied by Swiftwater Tractor. Blueline represents eleven lines of farm equipment, including the Kubota tractor line, and the Van Wamel Perfect line of ag machinery, and orchard and vineyard equipment designed and built by Blueline Manufacturing Company. Gregg Marrs is president of both Blueline Equipment and Blueline Manufacturing. For more information, visit the Web site www.bluelinemfg.com.

Keyes Packaging sold

A Chicago investment firm has acquired Keyes Packaging Group of Wenatchee, Washington, for an undisclosed price. Keyes is a leading provider of protective molded fiber and tissue wrap packaging for products such as apples, pears and wine bottles from its two facilities in Wenatchee and Yakima, Washington.

Arbor Investments of Chicago purchased the company from owner Tricor Pacific Capital Inc., a private equity firm in Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada.

“We were attracted to Keyes due to the company’s excellent market position, superior product quality, and unparalleled reputation in the packaging industry,” said Richard Boos of Arbor Investments.

Since 1999, Arbor Investments has acquired or invested in over 30 food and beverage companies in North America and currently has $600 million of assets under management across three funds.