Crystal Crop Protection Ltd has launched a next-generation herbicide Sikosa to protect paddy crop from weeds while enhancing yields. Sikosa is developed jointly in collaboration with Battelle, UK and Mitsui AgriScience International SA/NV (MASI).

C S Shukla, Senior Vice President, Strategic Marketing, Crystal Crop said Sikosa is found to be effective in controlling narrow leaf weeds, broad leaf weeds and sedges in paddy.

Crystal Crop plans to introduce Sikosa for paddy growers in Punjab, Haryana, Uttar Pradesh, Andhra Pradesh, Telangana, Tamil Nadu, Karnataka, West Bengal, Chhattisgarh in coming season, which will further strengthen its presence in paddy markets across India.

With this launch, the company is eyeing a 2-3 per cent market share in the pre-emergent herbicide market in the country, which is estimated to be around ₹550 crore, in the first year of launch, Shukla said. The market share can go up to 7-8 per cent in the next couple of years.

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Sikosa was tested in various State agricultural universities with more than 1,000 demonstrations in the last five years with paddy farmers. It will be an exclusive offering by Crystal Crop and will help farmers grow more profitable crops by attaining its maximum genetic potential.

“In this era of collaboration, Sikosa will be a great example of global collaboration in R&D based product introduction for Indian farmers. I am confident that this next generation herbicide will play a critical role in enhancing productivity in paddy crops. With this introduction, Crystal now has the widest range of products for the complete crop cycle of paddy,” said Ankur Aggarwal, Managing Director, Crystal Crop Protection Limited, said in a statement

Battelle UK’s Darren Grafham, said “We are excited to see the deployment of the Banyan technology co-developed with MASI and taken to market through our partner Crystal Crop Protection in India. This first product is expected to enhance the yields of paddy crops in India for the benefit of the farmers across the continent. We look forward to furthering our partnership with Crystal to bring innovations to India.“

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Sikosa will further strengthen the company’s paddy portfolio, which already has the industry’s leading brands like, Bavistin, Tilt, Blue Copper, Azotrix and recently-launched Mentor.

Hidetoshi Nakamura of MASI said, “We are proud to have discovered and developed with Battelle a breakthrough formulation technology. Our best-in-class formulation technology combined with Crystal’s expertise and extensive presence across India will allow Sikosa to become rapidly a leading paddy herbicide.”

Sikosa is expected to help increase Crystal Crop’s topline by 3-5 percent in years to come. The company has launched 14 products in last two years and it is ready to launch six to seven more products shortly depending upon the grant of registrations by the regulatory authority.