Biological pest control
As a rose grower, it is inevitable that you will be confronted with diseases and pests in your crop. The way in which you control these diseases and pests, though, is not an inevitability – it is under your control. At Afriflora Sher, we use biological and non-chemical pest control methods as much as possible. This is how Afriflora plays its part in improving the health of people and the environment.
BIOLOGICAL PEST CONTROL UTILIZES NATURAL ENEMIES TO COMBAT DISEASES AND PESTS
By now, we have reduced the use of chemical products by more than 50%. Afriflora Sher’s ambition is to work entirely with biological or non-chemical agents, whenever possible, and to continue to reduce the use of chemical products.
The roses from Afriflora Sher are constantly being inspected by well-trained personnel, our “scouts”, for diseases and pests. Examples of diseases and pests include spider mites, mealy bugs and thrips.
The scouts examine the rose bushes to determine whether the roses are pest-free. They check whether there are enough living beneficial insects present or whether a correction needs to be made. Sticky traps are also used. These traps attract certain insects, making it easier to assess whether a certain pest is present and how large its population is.
BIOLOGICAL CROP PROTECTION AGENTS
As soon as a pest or disease is found in the greenhouse, a natural enemy of that pest is immediately utilized as a pest control agent. For spider mites, for example, this is the predatory mite. The biological pest control products from our partners Koppert Biological Systems and Dudutech are scattered over the roses. These products are insects, which are in small bottles, that control the pest population in a natural manner.
Since we have introduced biological pest control methods, we have reduced the use of chemical agents for controlling insects by approximately 60%. Afriflora Sher is striving to achieve 100% natural pest control.
Chemical pest control only when necessary
Although Afriflora Sher uses natural enemies as much as possible, in some cases it is not yet feasible to use this method alone against pests and diseases. Chemical and non-chemical pest control remains a necessity at times. Harmful insects can be controlled by spraying them with soap solutions, for example.
Besides insects, there are also diseases that are caused by fungi and moulds. Consider, for example, mildew and powdery mildew, which are both commonly occurring diseases. Crop management measures, increasing the natural resistance of the plants and the proper choice of variety are all methods used to reduce the sensitivity of the roses to these diseases. In addition to these methods, chemical and non-chemical pest control agents remain a necessity. These methods are implemented by specialised personnel under strict safety measures, such as the use of obligatory protective clothing and face masks.
Afriflora Sher makes every effort to restrict the use of chemical products – biological, non-chemical pest control and plant-strengthening and preventive crop management measures, where possible, and chemical control only where absolutely necessary.
Products that are harmful to the environment or whose effects are not yet precisely known are not used. Afriflora Sher imposes these high standards on itself in order to offer its customers the best-quality roses without having a negative impact on the environment or the working conditions in our nurseries.
One of the ways we safeguard these high standards is by continuing to maintain our certifications from various external organisations. Part of becoming certified and maintaining certification is regular inspections to ensure that these high-level ambitions are, in fact, being met. Afriflora Sher also thinks it is extremely important to have earned certificates that assess and guarantee those processes mentioned above.
AFRIFLORA SHER’S MOTTO:
ALWAYS BIOLOGICAL IF POSSIBLE – CHEMICAL ONLY IF NECESSARY
AFRIFLORA SHER’S MOTTO:
Ambition: As clean as possible
Afriflora Sher strives to use as few chemical substances as possible, so that they can grow “clean” roses. The quantity and type of pest control agents used are continuously benchmarked against the international standards and the wishes of our customers and the society.
Its use of biological pest controls makes Afriflora Sher a pioneer in its sector in Africa.
Partner FSI (Floriculture Sustainability Initiative) Supports Afriflora Sher in natural crop protection. Together they started to get a rose breed as clean as possible. Now there are already six breeds. An example of a breed that’s already this far is the Sunny Sher.
Partner FSI (Floriculture Sustainability Initiative) supports Afriflora Sher in its work with natural crop protection. Together, we are now attempting to make our roses as clean as possible.
Every month, roses are sent to an independent laboratory in the Netherlands, where they examine our roses. This way Afriflora remains up to date about the quality of its roses. And by documenting all its processes, Afriflora guarantees transparency.
Afriflora Sher brings … sustainability
Sustainability (of the planet, of people and of profitably) is one of the core values of Afriflora Sher. Our roses are cultivated under natural conditions in metal greenhouses featuring plastic decking. Afriflora Sher does its utmost to use the natural conditions as effectively as possible.
At Afriflora Sher, all waste is sorted, recycled or reused
Materials are always reused – for example, the trays in which the roses are transported. If Afriflora Sher no longer needs certain materials, we check to see if they aren’t needed elsewhere in the economy.
This way Afriflora Sher contributes to sustainability in the region.