Apr 24, 2023
Harpe Bioherbicide finishes investment round

Harpe Bioherbicide Solutions has closed a $10.5 million round of fundraising. Harpe is an ag tech company focused on providing natural and sustainable herbicide solutions

The financing provides North Carolina-based Harpe the resources to advance research and development of its portfolio of natural, non-selective herbicide formulations, which use a series of active ingredient compounds found in plant extracts, to reach a commercial-ready phase, according to a news release. In addition, the financing supports the next development stages of Harpe herbicide-tolerant row crop systems, which will further expand and strengthen Harpe’s intellectual property portfolio, according to the release.

Harpe’s portfolio of products, which feature new sites and modes of action, offer wide-spectrum control of broadleaf and grass seeds or weeds.

“Through a series of all-natural herbicide formulations, our products will deliver new opportunities for organic and regenerative agriculture for pre, post and desiccation use patterns,” Bill Buckner, Harpe’s CEO, said in the release.

In addition, a series of tailored Harpe premix formulations will improve control of tough-to-kill weeds, including those resistant to current synthetic chemistries, thus facilitating the reduction and replacement of, and rotation with, synthetic herbicides used in row and specialty crop, commercial and consumer markets, according to the release. The further development of crops tolerant to Harpe herbicide formulations will pioneer the way for in-season use of the company’s proprietary series of plant-based herbicidal active compounds and offer growers additional tools to help produce abundant, healthy crops, according to the release.

“Harpe Bioherbicide Solutions exists to serve farmers on a global scale by developing novel and natural herbicide solutions to help mitigate increasing weed resistance challenges while seeking to advance sustainable practices in global food production,” Daniel Pepitone, Harpe’s COO, said in the release. “The strategic commitment and support of a global leader like ADM, along with further backing from existing investors, enables Harpe to advance our portfolio of novel, natural herbicides and related herbicide tolerant trait technology closer to the market, and closer to the farmers in need of new solutions.”

The funding round was led by ADM. Follow-on investments in the oversubscribed round included iSelect Fund Management and Alexandria Investment Ventures as well as company leadership and private agricultural industry investors.

“Sustainability is a pillar of ADM’s growth strategy and core to our purpose as a company, which is why we are excited to work with Harpe Bioherbicide Solutions to accelerate the introduction of new, nature-based herbicide options,” A.J. Todd, ADM’s vice president of commercial development for ADM’s mint business, said in the release. “We’re rapidly ramping-up our regenerative agriculture work, which benefits from environmentally friendly herbicides. We’re excited about this new collaboration and look forward to the opportunity to bring our plant-science and sourcing capabilities together with Harpe’s groundbreaking work.”

Based in Research Triangle Park in North Carolina, Harpe provides natural and sustainable herbicide solutions to expand and provide new opportunities for organic agriculture while reducing, replacing, and synergizing with synthetic chemical use in row and specialty crop, commercial and consumer markets. The result will support farmers’ success by overcoming current weed-control challenges and provide new sustainable farming practices to advance our food supply while improving the environment by decreasing the need for synthetic chemistry products, according to the release.

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