Biological pest control
It is inevitable that rose farms will encounter diseases and plagues. However, Afriflora Sher uses biological pest control and non-chemical products wherever possible. This is Afriflora Sher’s way of caring for people and the environment.
BIOLOGICAL PEST CONTROL INVOLVES USING NATURAL PREDATORS
AGAINST DISEASES AND PLAGUES
By using biological pest control, the company has been able to reduce the use of chemical products by over 50% in recent years. However, Afriflora Sher aims to use fully biological or non-chemical agents wherever possible, and thus further reduce the use of chemicals.
The roses of Afriflora Sher are continuously inspected for diseases and plagues by trained personnel. Examples of diseases and plagues include spider mites, mealybugs and thrips.
Scouts examine the rose bushes to determine whether roses are free of plagues. They check whether enough beneficial insects are present and whether corrective measures are needed. But sticky traps are also used. They attract certain types of insects and show whether particular types of pests are present and to what extent. This allows appropriate measures to be taken.
As soon as a disease or plague is discovered in a greenhouse, natural predators are immediately deployed as a control measure. For example, mesostigmata (mites) are used against spider mites. The biological pesticides are obtained in bottles from our partners Koppert Biological Systems and Dudutech, and can be simply scattered over the roses. These organisms are able to combat pests in a natural manner.
Since biological pest control was introduced, the use of chemical products against insects has decreased by approximately 60%. Afriflora Sher’s aim is to eventually only use natural pesticides in its production process.
CHEMICAL PEST CONTROL IF THERE ARE NO OTHER ALTERNATIVES
Although Afriflora Sher maximises the use of natural predators to combat harmful insects, in some cases, it is not possible to fight plagues and diseases in this manner. Chemical and non-chemical pest control sometimes continues to be necessary. For example, harmful insects can also be combated by spraying them with soap solution.
However, fungal diseases can also be encountered. For instance, mildew and downy mildew are frequently encountered diseases. Cultivation measures, like increasing the natural resistance of plants and selecting specific varieties, are used to reduce susceptibility to these diseases. If chemical and non-chemical pest control is needed, this is carried out by specialised personnel under very strict safety measures, like compulsory protective clothing and face masks. Only legally permitted products are used. In this case, Afriflora Sher adheres to norms that are imposed in Europe. This is done to offer customers roses of the best quality, without making concessions in working conditions and without harming the environment.
One of the ways to continuously realise high standards is to always be certified by various external bodies. This certification process involves performing regular independent inspections (audits) to check whether these high standards are actually being met. Afriflora Sher is thus also proud to possess certificates that assess and safeguard the processes above.
In addition, Afriflora Sher employs professionals that specialise in crop protection. They safeguard knowledge within the cultivation process.
AFRIFLORA SHER’S MOTTO:
ALWAYS BIOLOGICAL IF POSSIBLE – CHEMICAL IF THERE IS NO OTHER ALTERNATIVE
Partner FSI (Floriculture Sustainability Initiative) supports Afriflora Sher in its approach towards natural crop protection. We work together to grow our roses in the cleanest manner possible.
Each month, roses are sent to an independent laboratory in the Netherlands, where they are examined. This means Afriflora Sher always has an insight into the quality of its roses. In order to ensure transparency, the use of all products is registered. All locations are regularly inspected by bodies like MPS-ECAS and Flo-cert.
Afriflora Sher ensures… sustainability
Sustainability (planet, people and profit) is one of Afriflora Sher’s core values. The company’s roses are grown in natural conditions, using metal greenhouses that feature a plastic deck. The greenhouses are not heated. Afriflora Sher does its utmost to take advantage of natural conditions in the region.
In addition, Afriflora Sher tries to sort,
recycle and re-use wherever possible
Materials are sorted and re-used wherever possible.
This allows Afriflora Sher to improve sustainability in the region.