Gilles Josuan grows courgettes in the South of France. Ten years ago, his plants were contaminated by the Mosaic Virus. He decided not to tear up the whole crop, the only solution recommended by conventional agriculture. "I visited the site of Genodics, who instead propose healing plants with proteins of music! I had nothing to lose, so I gave it a try", says the farmer, who cultivates 40 hectares under glass and 50 in the open fields.
Every protein has its own specific melody
Then he observed what happened. "As soon as I began broadcasting music in my greenhouses, I could see the difference. After a few early adjustments, we managed to save my plantations. Today, the virus is still present, but it is inhibited by the music, and there’s no trace of it on my plants. So now I can commercialise them again", says the delighted farmer.
In order to attain these extraordnairy results, the producer needs to apply the exact protocol established by Genodics. Every night specifically targeted music is broadcast for 5 or 7 minutes, "but no more, otherwise it tires the plants", says the farmer, who harvests between 600 and 700 tonnes of vegetables per year.
Genodics say that they have to find melodies adapted to each pathology (fungus, virus, bacteria...) The source of these astonishing results is a technique called Proteody. "Putting it simply, during the process of the synthesising of proteins, the amino acids produce notes, thus emitting a melody specific to each protein", explains Pedro Ferrandiz, engineer and cofounder of Genodics. "We have to know which proteins are pertinent to the pathology we want to fight, then isolate them and discover the protein 'song' that will either stimulate or inhibit synthesis", Ferrandiz says. His work is based on the implementation of the theories of Joël Sternheimer, a physician and music-lover.
130 farmers use this solution
The role of Genodics is to identify and then decipher the musical score for each protein. Using these techniques, the company has helped more than 130 farmers to fight pathologies which threaten their production.
The results are convincing. "It works every time, but the results are variable – between 25% and 95%. For example, our results on the Cabernet grape variety have been spectacular, but a little less so for the wines of the Alsace region. On average, our success rate is about 70%", says Pedro Ferrandiz.
This approach to crop disease is in its early stages and these are experimental results which are now attracting the interest of the scientific community. Genodics has created a partnership with the University of Cergy, in the Paris area, in order to scientifically test and better understand the scientific basis for these results.