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AgTech Biostimulant Precision Agriculture

ICL Joins Forces with PlantArcBio to Boost Crop Yields

ICL (NYSE: ICL) (TASE: ICL), a leading global specialty minerals company, and ag-biotech company PlantArcBio, Ltd.(TASE: PLNT), today announced the development of a novel bio-stimulant technology platform, which will improve crop yields while having minimal impact on the environment. The platform successfully uses RNAi technology to maximize a plant’s natural yield increase mechanisms, without any genetic modification, and was the result of a multi-year research collaboration between the two companies. 

In early-stage canola field trials, the platform has significantly increased seed weight per hectare for canola crops, and ICL and PlantArcBio are planning larger-scale field trials in 2022. These will include testing the new technology platform using both commercial sprayers and standard farming practices. Greenhouse trials for soybeans and rice are already in progress, with early results showing good potential.  

“The use of novel biostimulants based on RNAi technology helps promote sustainability, by reducing the use of chemicals in agriculture,” explained Hadar Sutovsky, vice president of External Innovation and general manager of ICL Planet. “This aligns perfectly with ICL’s long-term goal of creating impact and sustainable growth in the agriculture end-market, alongside ensuring food security.”  The global biostimulants market was estimated to be $3.2 billion in 2021 and is projected to grow at a CAGR of 12.1% to reach $5.6 billion by 2026, according to ReportLinker.

“ICL and PlantArcBio have filed for a joint patent on the application for multiple crops,” said Sutovsky. “The application does its work, then rapidly disappears from both the plants and the environment, lasting no more than a few days, as it is highly biodegradable and also leaves no residual footprint.”

“The positive canola field trial results constitute another milestone in strengthening PlantArcBio’s capabilities in the development of RNAi-based products,” said Dror Shalitin, Ph.D., founder and CEO of PlantArcBio.  “ICL, a market leader in crop nutrition products, is a great strategic partner for us to commercialize this sustainable technology worldwide.”

About ICL

ICL Group is a leading global specialty minerals company, which also benefits from commodity upside.  The company creates impactful solutions for humanity’s sustainability challenges in the global food, agriculture and industrial markets.  ICL leverages its unique bromine, potash and phosphate resources, its passionate team of talented employees, and its strong focus on R&D and technological innovation, to drive growth across its end markets.  ICL shares are dually listed on the New York Stock Exchange and the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange (NYSE and TASE: ICL).  The company employs more than 12,000 people worldwide, and its 2021 revenues totaled approximately $7 billion. 

For more information, visit ICL’s website at www.icl-group.com.

About PlantArcBio

PlantArcBio, Ltd. (PAB) is a public Ag-biotech company [TASE: PLNT], with an innovative and IP protected Direct-In-Plant (DIP™) discovery platform, intended primarily for use in the agricultural industry, with a vision to contribute to global food security and address sustainable agriculture.  With its platform, the company discovers and develops novel genes and biological components that have beneficial effects on plants, such as yield improvement, drought resistance, and herbicide and insect tolerance.

For more information, visit PlantArcBio’s website at www.plantarcbio.com.

Forward Looking Statements

This announcement contains statements that constitute forwardlooking statements, many of which can be identified by the use of forwardlooking words such as “estimate,” “anticipate,” “believe,” “could,” “expect,” “should,” “plan,” “intend,” and “potential,” among others.

Forward-looking statements appear in this press release and include, but are not limited to, statements regarding the company’s intent, belief or current expectations.  Forward-looking statements are based on management’s beliefs and assumptions and on information currently available to management.  Such statements are subject to risks and uncertainties, and actual results may differ materially from those expressed or implied in the forward-looking statements due to various factors, including, but not limited to: estimates, forecasts and statements as to management’s expectations with respect to, among other things, business and financial prospects, financial multiples and accretion estimates, future trends, plans, strategies, positioning, objectives and expectations, general economic, market and business conditions, supply chain and logistics disruptions, energy storage and electric vehicle growth, the potential for new COVID-19 variants, global unrest and conflict, governmental and regulatory requirements and actions by governmental authorities, including changes in government policy, changes in environmental, tax and other laws or regulations and the interpretation thereof.  As a result of the foregoing, readers should not place undue reliance on the forward‐looking statements contained in this press release concerning the timing of the transaction, or other more specific risks and uncertainties facing ICL, such as those set forth in the “Risk Factors” section of its Annual Report on Form 20-F filed on February 23, 2022, as such risk factors may be updated from time to time in its Current Reports on Form 6-K and other filings ICL makes with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission from time to time.

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