"Herbal essential oils: Potential for development as low-risk pesticides, plant growth promoters and produce sanitizers” -ENTERPRISES/0916/0025 Start date: 01/12/2018, Duration: 24 months Total budget: 197.231,00 EUR CUT Budget: 156.534,00 EUR
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Project Summary: Widespread use of synthetic insecticides has led to negative consequences resulting in increasing attention to alternatives, such as essential oils. Essential oils contain a variety of molecules that act as pesticides and affect biological parameters such as growth rate. The share of eco-pesticides in the global market is constantly increasing yielding opportunities for SMEs, such as Meydan Solutions Ltd. In this context, PlantSafe project objectives are: 1) to conduct research to obtain novel results for the efficacy of a new product containing essential oils of eucalyptus and rosemary and its effects on treated plants and non-target mammalian species, 2) increase the participation of SMEs on the Cypriot RTDI system and 3) to support long term employment of young researchers. For materializing the objectives, the project is structured in five Working Packages (WPs). WP1 contains administrative and financial management. For supporting research novelty, internationally renowned scientific experts will participate forming the Scientific Committee. WP2 tasks and activities implementation will maximize project impact and visibility at national and international level. In WP3, industrial research to determine product’s effectiveness against key pests and a model natural enemy will be conducted in the laboratory and greenhouse. Moreover, research on the synergistic effects of the two essential oils present in the formulated compound in plants and its potential use as plant growth promoter and as an alternative and eco-friendly sanitizer during postharvest storage will be conducted (WP4). Finally, in WP5 side effects o the eco-pesticide on mammals and mammalian cells will be researched.