BASF Develops New Herbicide-Tolerant Rice System

BASF has announced the development of a new herbicide-tolerant rice system.

The Provisia Rice System will provide a new tool for post-emergence control of a broad range of grass weeds, including ALS-resistant grasses, weedy rice and red rice. It has been developed through traditional breeding techniques. Registration is anticipated as early as 2016 in the U.S., with other countries to follow.

The new system is comprised of Provisia seed containing the Provisia trait, which allows farmers to safely apply Provisia herbicide: an ACCase or group 1 herbicide site of action. Although Provisia herbicide will initially control grass weeds, BASF is working on combinations with other herbicides that will also provide control of broadleaf and sedge weeds.

“This new system will provide a different site of action, helping rice growers control ALS-resistant weeds,” said Jason Kuhlemeier, Technical Market Manager, BASF. “It was designed to be used as a companion to the Clearfield Production System for rice, allowing growers to rotate herbicide sites of action for controlling grass weeds including weedy rice and red rice. This provides a sustainable system to manage the risk of developing weeds that are resistant to available herbicides.”

BASF began initial research on this new system in 2008 and filed patent applications in 2009.

“Programs with our seed breeding partners to develop elite Provisia seed began in 2012 and are progressing nicely,” said Kuhlemeier. “We are optimistic that this new system will be available to growers as early as two to three years from now.”

The most advanced Provisia seed breeding program is the Louisiana State University (LSU) program. LSU has proven to be a leading rice breeding program recognized globally for their breeding success.

“The Provisia Rice System represents a significant advancement for rice growers,” said Steve Linscombe, Ph.D., Director of the Louisiana State University AgCenter Rice Research Station and rice breeder. “It will add flexibility and diversity in herbicide usage, which is critical for promoting clean fields while minimizing weed resistance issues. I am pleased with the rapid progress we have been able to make in the Provisia breeding program, and I expect that Provisia rice seed planted by farmers in the future will provide strong agronomic performance and good quality characteristics.”

In May of this year, BASF and RiceTec completed an agreement under which Provisia Rice System breeding will take place. RiceTec is geographically the broadest hybrid rice breeding program globally and has led the introduction of hybrid rice in the U.S. Discussions with other selected seed partners will continue as well.

BASF will strongly recommend that rice growers rotate the Provisia Rice System with the Clearfield Production System for rice to create a sustainable weed control program for grass weeds, weedy rice and red rice control, which will optimize weed control results for long-term rice production success.

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