Evaluation of copper alternative products to control grape downy mildew in organic farming

  • Anna La TorreEmail author
  • Lorenzo Righi
  • Valeria Iovino
  • Valerio Battaglia
Original Article


The aim of this work was to investigate the efficacy of copper alternative products of natural origin against Plasmopara viticola to reduce or replace the use of copper in organic farming. The identification of new active and sustainable substances is in fact of priority importance because of the environmental impact of copper. The activity of the products was investigated in laboratory and greenhouse conditions. The laboratory tests included the evaluation of the effect of products on mycelial growth, using artificially inoculated leaf disks, and on sporangial germination. The greenhouse experiments were carried out on grape seedlings cv. Malvasia di Candia treated with products and inoculated, after 24 h, with sporangial suspension of P. viticola. The results both of laboratory and greenhouse tests showed inhibitory activity performed by several botanicals (licorice leaf extract, Yucca schidigera extract), by ALD1901 product, a derivative from Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast, by Vacciplant formulation containing laminarin and by inorganic products as potassium hydrogen carbonate and MenoRame formulation based on micro-doses of copper and zeolites. The identification of sustainable approaches to manage grape downy mildew is very important to enhance the quality of organic production.


Plant protection products Natural products Cu Vitis vinifera L. Plasmopara viticola 



The authors would like to thank Dr. Kelderer and Dr. Casera of Laimburg Research Centre for Agriculture and Forestry of BZ Province - Italy and Dr. Mescalchin of S. Michele all’Adige (TN) – Italy for kindly providing infected grapevine leaves.


This research was carried out under “Strategies and possible alternatives to reduce copper use in organic farming - ALT.RAMEinBIO” project, funded by the Italian Ministry of Agriculture, PQAI 1 “Organic Farming and National Food Quality Systems and General Affairs” Office.

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participant or animal performed by any of authors.

Informed consent

Informed consent was obtained from all individual participants included in the study.


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Copyright information

© Società Italiana di Patologia Vegetale (S.I.Pa.V.) 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.CREA - Council for Agricultural Research and Economics - Research Centre for Plant Protection and CertificationRomeItaly

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