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In 1979 an operational field trial project for suppression of the pink bollworm (Pectinophora gossypiella) employing the ‘Gossyplure hollow fibre’ controlled release sex pheromone was undertaken near Bhatinda Punjab. The next year at the All India Bio-Control Workshop held at the Punjab Agricultural University Ludhiana the Project Coordinator AIRCP on Biological Control of Crop Pests and Weeds invited PCI to set up a research and development laboratory for biological control.

Quarantine & Storage (PPQ&S) Directorate of Agriculture-Aviation New Delhi Conrel – an Albany International company from the US and the Indian Cotton Mills Federation Bombay was a great success and proved that the pink bollworm was the major problem on cotton in Punjab. The effectiveness of biological control was demonstrated when subsequent yields increased by almost 34%. This extensive project carried out jointly with the Directorate of Plant Protection.

BCRL has recently moved to its new premises on the outskirts of Bengaluru. Spread over a large campus the new facility is used exclusively for research and production of bio-control agents. It has a large glass house modern process equipment and experimental fields for raising crops and evaluation of various beneficial organisms in a real-time environment. The new facility is envisaged to become an institution to impart training and research facilities to researchers students extension workers and farmers.

Extension workers from various Government agencies are trained regularly and foreign students study in-house. Recognition was received from UAS Bangalore for M.Sc./ Ph.D. students to carry out their research at BCRL. This association culminated in a formal Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) being signed between the two institutions for collaborative research training and extension thus making BCRL the first and so far only private institution to have done so in the country.

Major Projects
Training and awareness
Kisan Melas & Agricultural Fairs
  • Improving Commercial Scale Production and Formulation Technology for Nuclear Polyhedral Viral Pesticides

    • The National Agricultural Technology Project (NATP) funded by the World Bank and administered by the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) in association with the Department of Agricultural Entomology Tamil Nadu Agricultural University Coimbatore.

    • The first such project ever sanctioned to a private bio-control laboratory.

    • The single most important aspect in promoting biological control is awareness. Farmers have been used to traditional methods of spraying and therefore it is imperative that this awareness is created at grass-root level.

    • Often queries from farmers for new products lead to research for newer components in the package.
    • A team of Managers and field staff from PCI is at hand comprising Technical Sales Officers and Field Assistants all with a background in entomology they are either M. Sc. or B. Sc. Agri.
    • After a period of thorough training they are constantly in the field sharing the farmers experiences and providing solutions to their problems. Field demonstrations and awareness creation is their charter.

    • PCI stalls are a regular feature in kisan melas and other agricultural fairs.

    • The recently set-up Field Education and Extension (FEE) Unit headquartered at BCRL has taken on this mantle.
    • It carries out dedicated fieldwork through trials and validations of different products imparts education spreads awareness and collects feedback from farmers and general data and information from the field.

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