Located an hour's drive from Moscow is a 14-hectare farm where Rosehill grows cut roses. The biological crop protection provided by Koppert Russia is extremely important to this company. 'This approach allows us to reduce our use of chemicals. The result is more roses and better roses.'
Rosehill started using biological crop protection in 2012. The company is located some sixty kilometres south-west of Moscow, has 200 employees, and sells its roses directly to buyers.
Their experience with chemical crop protection agents is similar to that of other companies: lots of chemicals are used to combat pests at the expense of results.
Aram Movsisyan is production director at Rosehill. He says it took a lot of time and money to switch from chemical agents to beneficials (the company started with the predatory mite Neoseiulus cucumeris to combat thrips). 'Scouting was the hardest thing to master. Because of that, the results were a little disappointing at first. We weren't exactly sure how to use the beneficials, how to monitor their effects, and how to use beneficials and chemical agents at the same time.'
Experience is key
According to Aram, exchanging knowledge and information with other companies is crucial. 'But your own experiences are more important,' he says. 'They help us understand how beneficials work and how to use them. Experience is the best teacher.'
Now, in 2017, Rosehill is satisfied with the results of their biological crop protection. 'We now have a stable system,' says Aram. 'We use fewer chemicals and produce more roses of a higher quality.'
A reliable supplier
Rosehill greatly values its relationship with Koppert Russia. Olga Gerasimova serves as their primary consultant for biological crop protection. 'She and her colleagues at Koppert Russia are always willing to lend a helping hand or answer questions. Koppert is also extremely reliable in terms of the quality and the delivery of beneficials. We couldn't be happier with this collaboration.'