Startup partners with crop-protection marketer


Kalamazoo-based Vestaron develops bio-insecticides for the agriculture industry. Photo via

A startup developing bio-insecticides for the agriculture industry has partnered with a marketer of crop-protection products to bring a product to market.

Kalamazoo-based Vestaron Corporation said this week it has signed a marketing agreement with OHP, Inc., which will market Spear O, Vestaron’s greenhouse bio-insecticide that controls pests routinely cited as the toughest to control for greenhouse ornamental growers.

"We are very enthusiastic about partnering with OHP to commercialize this product," Vestaron CEO John Sorenson said. "OHP has a strong reputation in this segment of the market, and we expect the relationship to be a very fruitful one. I can't think of a better company to bring the safety and effectiveness of this biological insecticide to growers throughout the U.S."

Spear O

Vestaron said Spear O is a toxin-derived bio-insecticide controlling thrips, whiteflies and spider mites, without harming honey bees, fish, birds, humans and other mammals. It should be used in the same manner as other insect and mite control products.

"It's the first time that a venom-peptide has been developed for use as a bio-insecticide," OHP Technical Manager Dr. Carlos Bográn said

He added that with “a dual mode” of action, a resistance to Spear O is unlikely to develop.


The bio-insecticide producer exploits natural properties of a class of peptides that have potent insecticide potential, while remaining safe to mammals and the environment.

Recently, the company closed an oversubscribed Series D round of financing, totaling $18 million.

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