The European Biostimulant Industry Council (EBIC) promotes the contribution of plant biostimulants to make agriculture more sustainable and resilient and in doing so promotes the growth and development of the European Biostimulant Industry. EBIC was founded in June 2011 as the European Biostimulant Industry Consortium and changed its named when it gained legal identity in 2013.

Plant biostimulants contain substance(s) and/or micro-organisms whose function when applied to plants or the rhizosphere is to stimulate natural processes to enhance/benefit nutrient uptake, nutrient efficiency, tolerance to abiotic stress, and crop quality.

Biostimulants have no direct action against pests, and therefore do not fall within the regulatory framework of pesticides.

Laying the foundation for a nascent industry

While some biostimulants products have been on the market for many years, the research-based biostimulants sector has emerged recently. Farmers, investors, regulators, consumers, scientists and other industries are still learning about biostimulants and their role in sustainable agriculture. EBIC provides a platform for the biostimulants industry to interact with these key stakeholder groups and to address the issues they raise.

Like everyone, we have limited resources that we need to allocate according to priorities, so some stakeholders get more attention at one time or another, but we also believe that the questions, concerns and interest of all the stakeholders are ultimately connected.

Stakeholder-diagramBiostimulants are designed to help farmers meet growing agricultural demand sustainably. Biostimulants improve crop yield and quality, which has a positive impact on farm profitability. Biostimulants also improve the uptake and efficient use of other essential inputs, notably fertilizers. This helps farmers optimize their investments with the added benefit of reducing environmental impacts. Finally, while we think the market is ultimately the best mechanism for determining which are the best biostimulant products, we believe that minimum standards protect farmers and ensure that they have the information needed to make the best decision for their particular circumstances.

Consumers today want healthy, plentiful and affordable food that has been produced in a way that is compatible with their values. We never forget that biostimulants are used in the food chain. EBIC promotes standards that protect the health and safety of consumers. Because our products enable productivity and efficiency gains, they help reduce the environmental footprint of crop production.

Investors are increasingly interested in the potential of the biostimulants sector because of its significant growth potential. But the novelty of the sector means that investors often have limited information to guide their choices. EBIC tries to provide basic information about biostimulants products, the industry and the drivers of this technology’s emergence. Furthermore, EBIC works to increase market clarity, transparency, predictability and stability through its activities so that investors and others can make informed decisions.

EBIC’s relationships with regulators ultimately serve all of the other stakeholders. The best regulatory frameworks are based on a deep understanding of technologies, industries and the markets they serve. EBIC strives to provide the necessary technical and practical information so that the regulatory framework fosters innovation and fair competition while protecting consumers and farmers.

We also work with other stakeholders involved in agriculture, notably scientists and other industrial sectors.