The launch of Saori – The first "vaccine for plants"
After eight years of research and development, we were excited to launch our first PREtec product, Saori®, in Brazil in September 2021.
Saori promotes healthy growth of soybeans and helps them fight disease; Brazilian soybean growers spent $2.5 billion on fungicides to control disease in 2021, so this is a huge opportunity for Saori. With limited volume of product available, we focused on demonstrating the benefits of Saori in 2021; approximately 250 farmers tested the product and the reaction was enormously positive. Our partner Nutrien treated seed with Saori to plant more than 150,000 hectares in 2022, which resulted in sales well in excess of $0.75 million for PHC. Nutrien is targeting sales of more than 1 million hectares in 2025. With commercial production now established, we are confident that Saori™ will generate gross margins at least comparable to those we currently enjoy with Harpin αβ and we have the capacity to supply all forecast global demand and more.
In Brazil, further development work is under way to build on the successful 2021 launch of Saori for the treatment of Asian Soybean Rust and other soybean diseases. The Company plans to register a new liquid formulation of Saori, to complement the granular formulation launched in 2021. An application is expected to be submitted to the Brazilian Ministry of Agriculture, Livestock and Food Supply (“MAPA”) in 2023, with approval targeted for 2024.
The active ingredient in Saori, PREtec peptide PHC279 was submitted to MAPA for the control of sugar cane orange rust (Puccinia kuehnii) and coffee leaf rust (Hemileia vastatrix). The Company expects the registrations to be granted in late 2023 or early 2024. In 2022,