A Year To Savor

My, what a difference a year can make. In 2006, many in the ag retail community were just about ready to bury the crop protection products side of their businesses under a thick layer of biotech and triple-stacked seeds. For the year, sales for CropLife 100 retailers in the crop protection products category dropped a steep $821 million to just under $5.3 billion. Market share for crop protection products dipped to 39% — the lowest percentage in nearly a decade.

“In 2006, we finally saw what we had been fearing — a mass shift and decrease in crop protection,” said Jim Shelton, agronomy division manager for Landmark Service Cooperative. Many of the 2007 CropLife 100 retailers surveyed thought 2006 would mark the beginning of a steady downward spiral for the category.

A Nice Comeback

In 2007, however, crop protection product sales rose, if not from the grave, at least back into the land of respectability. Growing 3.8%, the category had revenue among CropLife 100 retailers of more than $5.5 billion. Although this rate of growth wasn’t good enough to keep the crop protection product segment from losing market share (down 2% to 37%), it was still welcome news to ag retailers that expected the worse.

“In our area, more preemerge grass treatments were used on Roundup Ready corn vs. last year,” says David Hintzsche, president for Hintzsche Fertilizer, Inc. “The other big change was the increased use of fungicides for corn this year. There was some use last year with good results, but many more acres were applied this year. Higher corn prices also supported this trend because there was an easier payback on the investment.”

Dan Kennedy, general manager for Ritter Crop Services, agreed that higher commodity prices made crop protection product investments more common in 2007. “I think for the most part, this was farmers going for the highest yields possible,” says Kennedy. “When commodity prices are higher, they will put more inputs into the crop. I think we are seeing the same thing in fertilizer.”

To appreciate just how widespread this positive news was in 2007, consider the performance of the category’s three sub-segments — herbicides, fungicides, and insecticides. In 2006, all of these segments suffered revenue losses or no gains. For example, when CropLife 100 retailers were asked if their herbicide sales increased in 2006, only 42% said this was the case. The other 58% either experienced sales declines or flat revenue for the year.

In 2007, the percentage of retailers seeing their herbicide sales increasing 1% to 5% jumped to 74%. Better still, only 6% of respondents said their herbicide sales declined.

For insecticides, the news was also much better in 2007. During the year, 59% of CropLife 100 retailers reported sales increases in this segment. This compared with only 37% that had revenue gains in 2006.

Fungicide Fun

Far and away, however, the star of the crop protection products’ universe in 2007 was fungicide. According to the 2006 CropLife 100 survey, only 44% of retailers had sales gains in this segment during that calendar year. In 2007, this percentage jumped ahead significantly, to 81%. Even more impressive, only 15% of respondents indicated their fungicide sales dropped in 2007, down from 30% the prior year.

Of course, this growth for the fungicides segment was tied to its preventive use by growers. Of the products available for this effort, strobilurins were the most popular, being used by 89% of those growers with fungicide programs. Triazoles were second at 39%, followed closely by chlorothalonils at 34%.

Going into 2008, 94% of CropLife 100 retailers expect preventative fungicide use to continue to be a “significant or steady growth opportunity” for their businesses. Only 6% of respondents believe this trend would have no impact on their operations.

Leave a Reply

Crop Inputs Stories
Crop InputsPlatform Specialty Products To Acquire Arysta LifeScience
October 20, 2014
Once the acquisition is complete, Platform Specialty Products will combine Arysta LifeScience with previously acquired companies Agriphar and Chemtura Crop Solutions. Read More
MicronutrientsMicronutrients Going Macro
September 9, 2014
Between 2014’s fantastic growing conditions and a heightened awareness on plant nutrition, the major players in micronutrients are gearing up for another big year. Read More
FertilizerFall Fertility 2014: Forecasting Fertilizer Use
September 7, 2014
Great crops this year have tapped the soil, and fall work is definitely called for, but how challenging will that get? Read More
FungicidesSudden Death Syndrome, Brown Stem Rot Reported In Indiana Soybeans
September 3, 2014
Farmers and retailers should be watching for symptoms of these two diseases over the next few weeks as they are best managed through preventative methods. Read More
Top 100 Articles
CropLife 100The Andersons Acquires South Dakota Plant Nutrient Manufacturer Kay-Flo
May 20, 2015
The Andersons, Inc., ranked No. 22 on the CropLife 100, has purchased Kay Flo Industries of North Sioux City, SD. “This Read More
CropLife 100North Central Farmers Elevator, Wheat Growers Unification Approved By Board, Still Awaits Member Approval
May 13, 2015
The Boards of Directors for North Central Farmers Elevator (NCFE) and Wheat Growers (WG) have voted to approve the Unification Read More
CropLife 100AgGateway’s Barcoding Initiative Progressing Nicely
May 8, 2015
According to legend (or Wikipedia), the first step towards modern bar codes came back in 1948, when Bernard Silver, a Read More
CropLife 100Pinnacle Agriculture Acquires Minnesota Retailer
April 14, 2015
Pinnacle Agriculture Holdings, LLC, ranked No. 6 on the CropLife 100,  has successfully acquired Liebl Ag, LLC in Ada, MN.  Read More
CropLife 100CHS, Aurora Cooperative Complete Fertilizer Storage, Grain Shuttle Loading Facility
April 13, 2015
CHS Inc., the nation’s leading cooperative and ranked No. 5 on the CropLife 100, and Aurora Cooperative (ranked No. 21) Read More
CropLife 100GROWMARK Acquires Missouri Refined Fuels Terminal
April 2, 2015
Bloomington, IL-based GROWMARK and Magellan Pipeline Co. have entered into an agreement in which GROWMARK will acquire the refined fuels Read More
Latest News
ManagementA New Sprayer Company & UAV Research In The Spotlig…
May 21, 2015
CropLife’s Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj talk about a Dutch sprayer manufacturer entering the U.S. with a super-sized entry and Read More
HerbicidesFirst U.S. Sale Of Enlist Duo Herbicide Made By Dow Agr…
May 21, 2015
Dow AgroSciences has recorded the first U.S. sale of Enlist Duo herbicide with Colex-D Technology. This marks the first commercial Read More
CropLife 100The Andersons Acquires South Dakota Plant Nutrient Manu…
May 20, 2015
The Andersons, Inc., ranked No. 22 on the CropLife 100, has purchased Kay Flo Industries of North Sioux City, SD. “This Read More
EquipmentNORAC Options Coming To TerraGator
May 19, 2015
Utilizing NORAC’s Standard Control technology, boom height control is now available for TerraGators with Airmax Precision 2 and Benson Booms. This Read More
Crop InputsHelena Introduces New Soil Health Product
May 19, 2015
Helena Chemical Co. is helping agricultural producers maximize yields and efficiency with the introduction of Liquid Chisel, a new product Read More
Stewardship4R Nutrient Management Planning Certification Now Avail…
May 19, 2015
The American Society of Agronomy (ASA) and the International Certified Crop Adviser (ICCA) program announce a new specialty certification in Read More
Environmental Defense Fund logo
Paul SchrimpfEnvironmental Defense Fund: Appreciating Partners
May 19, 2015
I WAS deep in the throes of preparation for the Commodity Classic meeting that took place this past February, trying Read More
WebinarsUpcoming Webinars
May 19, 2015
Register for one of our upcoming Webinars or access our archive of past Webinars to view recordings of presentations that may be of interest to you. Read More
Syngenta Sign
Seed/BiotechSyngenta Responds To Lawyer’s Victory Claim In Vi…
May 18, 2015
A plaintiff’s lawyer has issued a public statement claiming that damages have been awarded in the Agrisure Viptera corn lawsuits Read More
StewardshipCould Australian Water Trading Approach Fit In Californ…
May 18, 2015
Ten years of drought isn’t a good thing. It doesn’t help the bottom line of farmers or the health of Read More
SpreadersDutch Sprayer Manufacturer To Enter U.S. Market
May 18, 2015
Dutch self-propelled sprayer manufacturer Agrifac Machinery has announced intentions to enter the U.S. market with two models of sprayers available Read More
FertilizerTFI Weighs In On Fertilizer Rail Transport Bill
May 14, 2015
With today’s House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure as a backdrop, The Fertilizer Institute (TFI) registered its support for policies Read More
ManagementA Visit To The 2015 Environmental Respect Spirit Award …
May 14, 2015
CropLife’s Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj talk about a recent visit to the CPS Spirit winner in St. Stephen’s Church, Read More
StewardshipBayer Entomologist Issues Statement On Annual Honeybee …
May 13, 2015
Richard (Dick) Rogers, Principal Scientist / Entomologist, Bayer Bee Care Center for Bayer CropScience LP, today issued the following statement Read More
Crop InputsKansas State Researchers Announce Resistant Kochia Brea…
May 13, 2015
Kansas State University researchers say new research helps explain why an invasive weed is developing resistance to a well-known herbicide, Read More
RR2X soybeans surround untreated check (center)
HerbicidesUSDA Study: Glyphosate Application More Prevalent In So…
May 13, 2015
Glyphosate—known by many trade names, including Roundup—has been the most widely used pesticide in the United States since 2001. It Read More
AdjuvantsHelena Chemical Introduces New Drift Control Adjuvant J…
May 13, 2015
Helena Chemical Co. introduces Justified, an innovative drift control agent designed to improve the performance and precision of spray applications Read More
CropLife 100North Central Farmers Elevator, Wheat Growers Unificati…
May 13, 2015
The Boards of Directors for North Central Farmers Elevator (NCFE) and Wheat Growers (WG) have voted to approve the Unification Read More