Stored Product Protection with a Pheromone Based Multi- Insect Detector.

Period of Performance: 06/03/2015 - 12/31/2015


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Sensor Development Corporation
22500 LAKE RD STE 801 Array
Rocky River, OH 44116
Firm POC, Principal Investigator


Processing of whole grains and other cropsinto agricultural products, storage of those products and treatment of those stored products to control insect population growth are important parts of the agriculture industry.The red flour beetle, the warehouse beetle, the sawtooth grain beetle, the cigarette beetle and the Indian meal moth are destructive insect pests of these stored products.These stored product insects are most often found feeding on finished food products, the ingredients for food or are infesting equipment where food is prepared, processed, packaged or stored. The economic losses from these pests in the processing, transportation and storage system can be in the millions of dollars per incident of contamination, product recall, consumer complaint/litigation, and pest control applications.Current detection practices for the commonstored product insectsoften do not uncover the presence of an infestation at an early stage. New technologies are needed to boost food production by developing better ways to protect agricultural production systems from diseases and pests, and developing innovative ways to enhance food accessibility to vulnerable populations. New technologies are needed to reduce the incidence of food-borne illnesses through a safe food supply. Sensor Development Corporation's approach to detectingstored product insectsis very different. The ability to detect and measure pheromones, (not insects bodies), allows the user to actively search for the pheromone signature of a specific species or groups of related stored product insects. Much quicker detection should be possible as the level of detection of pheromone is in the PPB. Location of cryptic beetles in voids, crack and crevices, containers, and trailers would assist inspectors of foods (retail, warehousing, producers, even government) with more confidence. The devices could help prevent infestations of facilities and food contaminations. Use of SDC's device will reduce economic losses due to stored product insect pests, reduce the incience of food-borne illness by controlling disease-bearing pests, reduce the overuse of expensive pesticides, and reduce the perceived health risks related to pesticide use. A more aware consumer is demanding pest-free food and a living environment without the perceived risk of cancer causing pesticides. Stored Product Protection is evolving from a "scheduled by the calendar" pesticide treatment to a "show me there is a problem before I will allow my facility to be treated" philosophy. Therefore, the placement of more time and resources in prevention and monitoring of pest populations, as does our sensor, will help transform a new generation of people who are pest problem managers rather than pesticide applicators.