Irish generic crop protection company Life Scientific is to launch Aurelia, its own off-patent prothioconazole fungicide, onto the UK cereals and oilseeds market this spring.

The broad-spectrum fungicide contains 250g/l prothioconazole and has eradicant and protectant activity for use in many different crops. Aurelia is supplied in an emulsifiable concentrate formulation and is suitable for use alone or in combination with a wide range of other pesticides, giving effective control of key diseases. It is commercially available through Life Scientific’s distribution partners ProCam and Hutchinsons.

“Life Scientific’s approach is based on the very strong scientific concept to reverse engineer a product from the original to produce a product accepted as the same by the regulatory authority,” explains Ruth Stanley, Life Scientific’s UK technical manager. “This means we can offer off-patent products to agronomists and growers earlier than any other off-patent company, which is what we have done with Aurelia.”

Mrs Stanley explains that in order to assess the comparability of Aurelia against the reference product Proline, Life Scientific carried out a series of eight separate field trials across the UK and France. “The aim of the trial was to compare the performance of Aurelia against the reference product Proline, in controlling Septoria tritici and Brown rust in wheat.” To encourage the development of disease, no T1 treatments were applied. “Crops then received a single application of Aurelia or Proline, between the growth stages 39 and 45. We carried out disease assessments on leaves 1 and 2 for 3 to 4 weeks after application. The results were as we had hoped; the performance of Aurelia was the same as Proline.”

Aurelia is also approved for use in winter OSR, providing moderate control of light leaf spot, stem canker and Sclerotinia stem rot. In AHDB trials from 2015-2017, prothioconazole also performed consistently well in controlling Sclerotinia.

For more information on Aurelia, visit the Life Scientific website.