CEARITIS was created in 2020 to research biocontrol solutions. The company’s lead product is a system that protects tree crops from major pests while respecting biodiversity. AFYREN and CEARITIS, which share the same values and the same commitment to a more sustainable environment, announced at the beginning of the year their collaboration to provide arboriculturists with an innovative alternative to insecticides that respects biodiversity and is not harmful to the environment.
Coming from a family of arboriculturists, Marion Canale and Solena Canale Parola founded CEARITIS to come up with a safe and nature-friendly solution to a problem they were all too familiar with. To mark this year’s International Day for Biodiversity, we had the pleasure of speaking with Marion Canale, CEO of CEARITIS, about this major issue.
An interview led by Caroline Petigny,CSR Director – AFYREN
Today is International Biodiversity Day.
Why is this topic of particular interest to you?
Biodiversity is a fundamental subject in agro-ecology, since it is responsible, among other things, for the natural regulation of pests and the balance of ecosystems. This is and will continue to be a major issue in the years to come; in the current context, it is imperative to protect the environment and our ecosystems. According to WWF, the average size of wild vertebrate populations has declined by 69% between 1970 and 2018.1
These declines in population are a warning that must be heeded. Pollution or the use of unsuitable or toxic products in their living spaces is often the cause.
In agriculture in particular, each individual, species or insect completes a link in the development chain.
At CEARITIS we work for biodiversity. Our solutions are defined and adapted to the ecosystems of the crops we work on. This is an essential point of our development. Taking into account the different agricultural issues using an ecosystem approach allows us to provide an effective and sustainable response on the biocontrol market.
How can CEARITIS solutions help arborists to reduce their impact on biodiversity?
The “Push & Pull” biocontrol technology we have developed protects crops from tree pests without impacting biodiversity. The system consists of a repellent solution that acts as a natural barrier and prevents the entry of pests into the plot, and an attractant solution situated outside the plot that attracts fruit flies and deflects them into an innovative trap.
The active molecules we use are not toxic for humans or the environment and are specific to the targeted pests, so they do not disturb other useful insects. They are produced using AFYREN’s innovative biobased technology.
In addition, the system’s PIRA trap is designed to trap only insect pests: we have adapted the size of the openings, analyzed the attractant molecules and made a number of refinements to this autonomous pest capture system.
We also offer arboriculturists, either with or without the system, a complete agroecology consulting service for the implementation of custom alternative solutions that are effective on several agricultural problems (yield, quality, tree health etc.).
The solutions we offer do not alter in any way the water, the soil or the environment where they are applied. Our objective today is to provide an ecosystemic service that will enable arboriculturists to obtain better harvests while ensuring the sustainability of their crops.
What have you done to reduce your own environmental impact as a company?
We have put a number of measures in place to limit our impact on the environment:
All our raw materials are «Made in France» and our technology is designed 100% with french partners and service providers. We test and select all our raw materials with the environment in mind, and work both locally and on a national scale to limit our environmental impact.
We have a composting system where our employees bring their organic waste. The compost is used on our experimental 2500m² orchard at the Technopole de l’Arbois in Aix en Provence. We are going to start the procedure to join the 1% for the Planet collective and we motivate our employees to donate their skills or their time to environmental associations.
CEARITIS and AFYREN recently announced a partnership. How can this collaboration have an impact on the preservation of biodiversity?
Our partnership with AFYREN is a perfect example of our commitment to preserving biodiversity. AFYREN supplies the biobased products CEARITIS uses as active repellents for our Push&Pull technology.
These active ingredients are not toxic for humans or the environment. This is particularly important when we know the major role of biodiversity for the agricultural ecosystem. Through this partnership we have secured the industrial supply of part of our solution over 5 years, and we have guaranteed their composition , which is essential for their regulatory approval, where the referencing of molecules is needed. All production processes for active ingredients, formulations or applications are designed to have as neutral an impact as possible on biodiversity or the environment.
We’ve ensured this partly through the selection of raw materials from AFYREN, which takes a circular, biobased, approach to manufacturing its ingredients.