Kathrin Bachmann, Segment Manager for Biologics at Bayer, talks about the benefits of biological crop protection products and the research she’s been doing in that area.
What excites you so much about crop efficiency and biologicals?
In view of the huge challenges we face, we need new solutions for agriculture. Biologicals are an area of research with great potential that haven’t yet been fully exploited. The solutions aren’t easy – you can’t simply take a biological product, apply it to a seed or on the field, and hope it will work, as the results are likely to be disappointing. You have to study numerous interactions between the biological product, the plant, and the environment. The key to success is to use biological products in the right way. Once we have correctly positioned these products in the market, we will gain a valuable tool for modern agriculture.
What’s so special about biologicals?
I worked at Bayer’s West Sacramento site for just over a year to get to know our biological products better and understand the science behind them. For me, that was a real eye-opener. I realized just how much science there is in our products – from selecting the right strains, which we now do with great precision, up to the various components that make up a successful product: how to produce and stabilize a product, and how it reacts with other products and plants.
So why are you now working from Monheim?
To be successful in biologicals, we need to see these products not in isolation but within the context of Bayer’s Customized Agronomic Solutions with their conventional active ingredients, seed traits, biologics, etc. For that reason, it’s important that we product managers work together and cooperate closely at the Crop Science headquarters in Monheim.