On the heels of Alltech’s acquisition of Solbiosur in December 2016, we caught up with the people who are hard at work making this joining of forces possible.
Alltech Crop Science (ACS) has been active in Europe for over 20 years. What began in the U.K., Ireland, Turkey and Denmark, where a considerable percentage of maize silage and potato crops were being treated with Alltech Crop Science solutions, soon expanded to other countries in Europe, such as Spain.
Solbiosur was founded in Spain in 2007, and since then, the company has become well respected in the national market and has increased its presence in the agricultural sector.
We spoke with Robert Walker, former general manager of Alltech Crop Science and current CEO of KEENAN, who was involved in the early partnering of ACS with Solbiosur; Dr. Steven Borst, current general manager of Alltech Crop Science; Jomi Bernad Blanch, Alltech regional director for Iberia; and Pedro Navarro, the commercial director for Solbiosur, to discuss the history of the collaboration and what exciting developments are expected in the near future.
How did the relationship between Alltech Crop Science and Solbiosur begin?
Robert Walker: In 2011, ACS collaborated with Ideagro, a private research company in Spain, and Solbiosur to run several trials on intensive crops. The success of these trials resulted in increasingly strong relationships between the two companies.
Pedro Navarro: The commercial relationship with ACS began in 2012 and has grown exponentially since then. By working together, we’ve been able to improve our growers’ production plans and increase their yields.
How do the companies complement one another?
Dr. Steven Borst: Solbiosur has a deep understanding of ACS technology and has used this to support its growers’ needs and ensure that the appropriate solutions are being applied. Pairing with Solbiosur, ACS can leverage its global understanding of markets and help Solbiosur expand its successful Spanish model to other parts of the world.
What benefits can growers expect from the partnership between Solbiosur and Alltech?
Jomi Bernad Blanch: Our coming together will mean an ability to deliver greater value to our customers.
Navarro: They can expect solutions to their problems, and they will know that the future of agriculture is bright.
Walker: Not only will the customers have better access to products, but they will also have access to greater support and research.
What are the opportunities in Spain and Europe for Alltech and Solbiosur?
Blanch: We believe this development unlocks an abundance of opportunities for agricultural and horticultural crop producers not just in Spain, but across the European region. The reach of both companies has significantly increased by joining forces.
Navarro: We can offer new natural-based technologies adapted to the localized markets throughout Europe and increase consumer peace of mind when they are buying their produce.
Are there going to be developments on a global level that result from the acquisition?
Borst: Absolutely. The ability for local countries to have this hub in Spain is a major opportunity to expand beyond the Iberian region.
Walker: This acquisition increases opportunities for further collaboration in other ACS markets, such as California, Brazil, Florida and Turkey, resulting in expansion of technologies, research and the sharing of ideas.
What are your thoughts about Alltech and Solbiosur’s new relationship?
Navarro: When we began, we didn’t know anything about the ACS products. Now, not only can we can attest to the efficacy of the products, but we have become a part of Alltech. We have a great opportunity ahead of us. Our customers are always looking to improve their operations, and I think that together we can achieve this.
Borst: We have the same focus of providing natural-based solutions that are safe and beneficial for agriculture, the consumer and the environment. Solbiosur has taken this core mission to heart, and it makes a lot of sense for us to work together as one team.
For more information, view our press release regarding Alltech’s acquisition of Solbiosur.