Alittle creature has been the cause of much destruction in the ornamental and horticultural industry recently. This fuss is all about the False Codling Moth (FCM –Thaumatotibia leucotreta). Three years ago, False Codling Moth was classified by Europe as a quarantine pest and member countries were recommended to regulate its presence. So, what is going on? Are we looking at a serious threat to the ornamental and horticultural sector?

No. Not at all, thanks to Madumbi Kenya Limited. Farmers preparing their spray programs can now include Cryptex® a cutting edge granulovirus technology for the suppression of False Codling Moth (FCM).


Why Choose Cryptex®
Speaking to Floriculture Magazine, Mr. Stephen Musyoka, General Manager, Madumbi Kenya said, ‘Flower growers are today looking for innovative solutions and that is what we are offering. Cryptex® is a South African isolated granulovirus strain, manufactured in Switzerland by world renowned virus specialists, Andermatt Biocontrol.

Cryptex® achieves highly effective FCM population reduction and damage control when applied as recommended. It has a very specific target range, a unique mode of action and a user-friendly SC formulation. Cryptex® is non-toxic, has no MRL requirements and no with-holding period’.

Growers who have used Cryptex® are in agreement, the solution has proven and consistent efficacy against FCM on flowers and horticultural products. They described it as an effective granulovirus product and one of the best tools currently available to reduce target pest populations.

Cryptex® will not affect any beneficial organisms and is harmless to bees. The mode-of-action of virus products differs from chemical insecticides, making Cryptex® ideal for use in IPM and resistance management programs.

Mr. Musyoka confirmed that this advanced formulation allows for versatile application options with no feeding stimulant (molasses) needed. Its lipophilic characteristics ensure excellent adhesion and rain fastness once it has dried off after application. Cryptex® can be tank mixed with most agricultural products provided pH is correctly managed (i.e. pH of tank solution should be between 5 and 8). The product has excellent shelf life; min. 24 months at 4 °C, and longer if kept at –18 °C. It is suitable for organic and conventional agriculture and can be applied during the harvesting period.

How does Cryptex® work?
Cryptex®, a Thaumatotibia leucotreta Granulovirus is produced by Andermatt Biocontrol, Switzerland - leading virus producers globally, with more than 30 years’ experience in the commercial pest control industry.

Cryptex® contains encapsulated virus particles, which are applied just after peaks in FCM flights. It has to be ingested by FCM larvae to be effective. Once ingested the alkaline conditions in the FCM midgut dissolves the protective capsule, activating the virus particle which infects and replicates itself in the cells lining the midgut and resulting in death. Buffering of the spray mix (pH 5 to 8) is extremely important as very alkaline or acidic conditions could dissolve the protective capsule in the spray tank and decrease the virus particle’s tolerance to environmental conditions, as well as overall efficacy.

The Madumbi ‘team of experts’ highlight 5 reasons why Cryptex® should be included in your growing program this season


  1. ‘Backed by Science, Loved by Nature’ – Cryptex® has been extensively researched and proven to achieve consistent efficacy against FCM on a variety of crops
  2. An integrated strategy against FCM increases overall efficacy and manages resistance. The inclusion of biological products such as Cryptex® in IPM programs is becoming ever more important
  3. Cryptex® is a quality product with no impact on beneficial organisms
  4. Cryptex® is easy to use! Cryptex® can be added to tank mixtures and has been proven to be just as effective without additional adjuvants or feeding stimulants (no molasses!)
  5. Application at the right time ensures best possible population reduction


In summary, growers are fortunate to have access to an arsenal of potential products to reduce FCM pressure through the season. From pheromones and sterile moths for mating disruption to virus products, entomopathogenic fungi and traditional pesticides; the choice can be overwhelming. The truth is, there is no one silver bullet when it comes to successful FCM management.

An integrated approach that combines the benefits of all these products, as well as cultural practices, is important, if not essential to managing populations for years to come. Mating disruption is the traditional early season approach to reduce egg laying and thereby reduce subsequent pest population thresholds.

As described above, the virus product is also recommended early in the season. This often begs the question, why is it necessary to use both early on? The virus as a result is pushed later in the season to crisis manage populations and this is not the ideal approach. No one product or method can be considered to be 100% effective. Moths that miss the effects of mating disruption still lay eggs in the orchard, the resulting larvae, if not appropriately controlled go on to cause damage and if not managed add to the second and third generations of the season. A virus application timed 7-10 days after the 1st moth peak with mating disruption gives you the best opportunity to limit damage and manage later season damage and population explosion.

Following a holistic approach through the rest of the season with orchard sanitation, further Cryptex® applications incorporating insecticides and bioinsecticides like Eco-Bb towards the end of the season creates a holistic approach that keeps FCM thresholds low, manages resistance and leaves little to no residues.

Cryptex® contains Cryptophlebia / Thaumatotibia leucotreta Granulovirus (CrleGV). Reg. No. PCPB(CR)1969. Madumbi Kenya Ltd, Two Lakes Business Park, Naivasha. Contact Stephen Musyoka, Tel. +254 722 888 377, Email: stephen@