Research and Development

Being a R&D oriented organisation, it was but essential for us to establish a strong research team. Headed by Dr. Balachander and Sharan, the team is responsible for delivering innovative and sustainable solutions for agricultural and livestock farmers. The principal objective of the R&D team at Ponalab is to make farmers self sufficient, and allow them to improve the quality and quantity of their produce with little or no inputs from specialists. We combine our expertise, along with technological partnerships and knowledge transfers gained from world-renowned organizations such as Bhabha Atomic Research Centre, Indian Council for Agricultural Research, and our foreign collaborator, Carlsbad Biosystems, USA.

Our R&D units are located at Mysore and Bangalore, with field units spread across Karnataka, Andhra Pradesh, Uttar Pradesh, Gujarat, and Rajasthan – states with diverse soil and crop conditions in India. Our research lines are divided into:

The crop research line works on creating disease and pest resistant seeds for:

  • Field crops such as Paddy, Sugarcane, Maize and Cotton
  • Vegetable crops

Our crop protection research includes a variety of sustainable biological methods to control disease, build resistance to pests and to promote growth. These include:

  • Our flagship biofungicide, Kausshik, which was developed in collaboration with Carlsbad Biosystems, USA, in a research funded by the National Horticultural Mission. The fungicide prevents diseases such as grey mould, powdery mildew, downy mildew, early and late blight, bacterial spot, rust, cercospora, brown spot, wilt and root rot in Tomato, Chilli, Cucurbit, Grape, Groundnut, Pepper, Potato, and other horticultural crops, as well as field crops such as Paddy and Wheat.
  • Trivikram, another biofungicide has its distinction in the higher catalytic strains of Trichoderma in a liquid formulation. It helps in improving the management of crop diseases
  • FUSWLT is a project at Ponalab engaged in the development of symbiotic bacteria associated with protozoa for the control of Fusarium Wilt on banana and tomato crops
  • The Endored project, a biocontrol system that leverages the potential of endophytes on Colletotrichum red dot in sugarcane crops

The second arm of our crop protection research line is our investigation into methods for integrated Pest Management. Our endeavours have yielded fruit in our line of biopesticides and beneficial nemadotes that include:

  • Diganth, a biopesticide that develops and enhances the dissemination of beneficial nematodes for the management of sucking pests such as whitefly and Aphids.
  • Metanem is another combination of beneficial nematodes and Microsclerotia for the long term control of sugarcane shoot borer Chilo infuscatellus
  • Biotermicide is yet another project aimed at developing a solution that aids in the dissemination of an attractant-based symbiotic bacteria Alcaligenes sp. Flavobacterium sp. and Providencia sp. for managing wood-eating termites in wood plantations such as Teak.
  • Xylorhab is a project for the evaluation of pathogenic bacteria associated with the rhabditid nematodes on coffee stem borer Xylotrechus quadripes.
  • Nemacap is a project that is focusing on developing capsule-based nematode formulations for pest management

The D-Micro project is evaluating the use of drought-resistant strains of microbials for the management of tri-nutrient N, P, and K in select fruit crop ecosystems.

Project Nano focuses on developing organic nano emulsifiers for agricultural applications.