Simply Seedsational

Growers planting biotech seed next spring will certainly have a broad array of corn and soybean options to choose from, including the industry’s first eight-stacked trait offerings. In fact, 2010 may well be remembered as the “mother of all biotech seed years” if all the anticipated seed registrations are approved.

That is, until the 2011 season, when another strong group of genetically modified (GM) seed commercial launches are anticipated. Then again, the 2012 pipeline is said to be solid, too.

If there was any doubt before, it’s a certainty now that many of the North American crop protection market leaders — including Bayer CropScience, Dow AgroSciences, DuPont Crop Protection, Monsanto Co., and Syngenta Crop Protection — have successfully hit their stride in the seed market by utilizing acquisitions, restructuring, and research and development (R&D) during the past decade.

The blurring line between seed and ag chemicals emphasizes that those tiny corn and soybean nuggets in your hand are the food, feed, fiber, and fuel currency of not just your business and community, but the world. With that kind of revenue potential, it’s no wonder manufacturers dedicate key resources to their seeds business.

It’s a trend that’s going to continue, say several manufacturers, but in order for your dealership and growers to reap the full rewards, you’ll need to be very seed savvy.

Teaming Up

GM seeds have been popular for some time for their all-in-one ability to provide pest control and improve yields. Now manufacturers go one step further: If they see a better mousetrap part in another company’s cache and can offer something in return, they join forces, stacking their elite traits into power performers. The pairings, which may provide you with more region- or pest-specific product offerings, are already beginning to produce commercial products, including these.

•  One of the most advanced and anticipated collaborations is SmartStax corn, co-developed by Monsanto and Dow AgroSciences LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Dow Chemical Co. The hybrid line stacks eight different genes that provide herbicide tolerance plus above- and below-ground insect protection, enabling reduced corn refuge for insects. Recent approvals from the U.S., Canada, and Japan have it on track for a 2010 commercial launch, which will be separate for each company.

•  Syngenta has teamed up with Dow AgroSciences, stacking its Agrisure and Dow AgroSciences’ Herculex technologies to create new corn hybrids that the two companies will commercialize separately. The cross licensing agreement also provides Dow AgroSciences access to Syngenta’s Ag­risure Viptera trait.

Pending EPA approval, the agreement paves the way for a reduced-refuge stack in Midwestern corn. EPA has approved a nationwide 20% refuge for hybrid stacks containing the Agrisure Viptera event and either the Agrisure 3000GT triple stack or the Agrisure GT/CB/LL (glyphosate tolerant/corn borer/LibertyLink) stack. This is a reduction from the 50% refuge previously required in corn- and cotton-growing areas in the South. Corn growers will benefit from increased flexibility in traits that the combination of technologies provides, says Jerome Peribere, president and CEO of Dow AgroSciences.

•  Dow AgroSciences’ licensing and R&D agreement with Schillinger Seed, Inc. allows the company to commercialize transgenic commodity soybeans. “This will expand the soybean platform for Dow AgroSciences to launch its Dow Herbicide Tolerance (DHT) trait and help accelerate the development and launch of future traits in soybean,” says Peribere. DHT is a new family of traits that will provide tolerance to 2,4-D and other classes of herbicides.

•  This summmer, Bayer Crop­Sci­ence and DuPont Crop Protection entered into a series of long-term business agreements that target increased crop yields. The deals involve Bayer CropSciences’ LibertyLink trait and Dual Bt (Bacillus thuringiensis) technology and extend the company’s reach through DuPont subsidiary Pioneer Hi-Bred’s various markets.

The agreements establish cross-licenses for new multi-insect control and multi-herbicide-tolerant products in corn, multi-herbicide-tolerant products in soybeans, and new herbicide products from Bayer CropScience and the DuPont and Pioneer businesses.

The agreements also resolve outstanding legal and patent disputes between the companies in the area of insect control and herbicide safeners.

2010 Corn Choices

Early planting intentions for the 2010 season are leaning in favor of corn, according to Farm Futures magazine, which surveyed 741 U.S. growers by e-mail between July 24-Aug. 5. Bucking this year’s trend, the survey indicates a corn planting of 87.5 million acres, up 500,000 acres from USDA’s late summer 2009 estimate. Soybean acreage will drop to 75 million acres from 77 million acres this year.

“Corn/soybean price ratios favor soybeans, but many farmers have been disappointed the last two years by their soybean crops,” says Farm Futures Senior Editor Bryce Knorr. “Plus, after planting more beans this year, farmers may want to realign their rotations.”

The new GM corn hybrids choices include the controlled release of the anticipated Optimum GAT corn from Pioneer, which offers glyphosate and ALS (acetolactate synthase inhibitor) tolerance. Regulatory approvals in certain U.S. export markets are taking longer than expected, and the delay will limit the introductory volumes of Pioneer brand corn seed with the Optimum GAT trait to controlled releases in 2010 for corn and 2011 for soybeans. USDA regulatory approval for Optimum GAT corn is on track for later this year.

Pioneer also plans to offer its Opti­mum AcreMax I, pending regulatory approvals, as part of the company’s “Right Product, Right Acres” strategy. “It’s the first system to integrate the refuge hybrid into the bag, in this case corn rootworm refuge,” explains Jerry Harrington, Pioneer’s sales and marketing public relations manager. Your growers won’t need a separate corn rootworm refuge since the refuge plant will be distributed throughout the field. Optimum AcreMax II, which will be available in a few years, will add a corn rootworm trait in the bag. No refuge will be required.

SmartStax corn is expected to be launched by Dow AgroSciences and Monsanto. A key feature is yield advantage, since SmartStax hybrids require a 5% refuge instead of the traditional 20% requirement for first-generation Bt traits.

Monsanto will offer SmartStax under its Genuity brand across its three corn seed channels which include national brands, such as DeKalb, regional brands in the company’s American Seeds, Inc., and license partners through Corn States seed company. Dow AgroSciences will provide SmartStax through its Mycogen and Triumph Seed brands.

Syngenta Seeds anticipates a targeted launch for its Agrisure Viptera trait also with its Greenleaf Genetics. EPA approved two insecticidal trait stacks: Agrisure Viptera trait plus the Agrisure 3000GT stack, designed to provide control of a broad spectrum of lepidopteran corn pests, along with control of corn rootworm and glyphosate and glufosinate herbicide tolerance; and Agrisure Viptera trait plus the Agrisure GT/CB/LL trait stack, providing the same broad-spectrum lepidopteran control and glyphosate and glufosinate herbicide tolerance, but without corn rootworm control.

2010 Soybean Specials

On the soybean side, Southern growers are anticipating the introduction of Monsanto’s Genuity Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans in their region in 2010. The second-generation soybean technology has performed strongly in the Midwest already, according to the company. Genuity Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans provide the same weed control as Roundup Ready beans, but also add higher yield potential.

Soybean aphids are a key pest in soybean fields, but growers will have a new tool in 2010 to help protect their crop from infestations. Syngenta Seeds says its soybean aphid management system is the first and only fully integrated aphid management system for soybeans. It includes three components: A Cruiser Maxx seed treatment, an aphid-resistant trait in the seed, and money back to clean up with an application of Syngenta’s Warrior insecticide if the population exceeds threshold levels. The system will be available through Garst, Golden Harvest, and NK Seeds.

Syngenta also is launching its new NK-1 Class Soybeans, a superior lineup of NK Soybeans selected for their demonstrated ability to deliver outstanding yield and performance in all environments and against top competitors. This combination protects crops from common yield-robbing diseases and emerging challenges such as sudden death syndrome and Sclerotinia white mold. CruiserMaxx Beans seed treatment coupled with this exclusive class of soybeans improves plant vigor and provides additional yield protection.

They will be distributed by Garst Seed, Golden Harvest, and NK Seeds.

Topics:

Leave a Reply

Seed/Biotech Stories

dicamba, Roundup Ready 2 Xtend
Crop InputsASA: No Dicamba On Roundup Ready 2 Xtend In 2016
May 16, 2016
While Roundup Ready 2 Xtend (RR2X) are tolerant to dicamba and glyphosate herbicides, no dicamba herbicides will be approved for Read More
Crop InputsGMO Pipeline Features Consumer Targeted Modifications
April 15, 2016
The newly approved GMO Simplot Innate potato, developed to produce lower amounts of the harmful-yet-natural chemical acrylamide, resist bruising, and Read More
Crop InputsReuters: Chinese GMO Seed Espionage Making Iowa Farmers Uneasy
April 12, 2016
Tim Burrack, a northern Iowa farmer in his 44th growing season, has taken to keeping a wary eye out for Read More
Peanut field
FungicidesArysta LifeScience Receives EPA Approval Of Fungicide Seed Treatment
April 5, 2016
Arysta LifeScience North America recently announced it received approval from the EPA of RANCONA V PD, a broad-spectrum fungicide dust Read More
Trending Articles
The Andersons Waterloo
ManagementFirst Indiana Facility Certified Under 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification Program
June 27, 2016
The 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification Program has announced that The Andersons, Inc.’s Waterloo, IN, facility has been added to its Read More
Food IT
Industry NewsCalifornia Event Will Mix Ag And Tech Professionals To Explore IT Solutions
June 20, 2016
Silicon Valley is hot on agriculture, and an upcoming event in California will bring together the food and tech industries Read More
Monsanto Luling Plant
Eric SfiligojWhat’s Next For Monsanto?
May 31, 2016
For the folks at Monsanto’s headquarters in St. Louis, MO, it has been an eventful few weeks. Back on May Read More
Soybean Plant closeup
Industry NewsMonsanto Rejects Bayer Bid; Open To More Talks
May 25, 2016
Monsanto Co, the world’s largest seed company, turned down Bayer AG’s $62 billion acquisition bid as “incomplete and financially inadequate” Read More
Eric SfiligojPity The Monsanto Haters
May 23, 2016
An old saying goes thus: “Be careful what you wish for. You just might get it.” Given current events, there Read More
Monsanto Luling Plant
Crop InputsReport: Bayer Eyeing Monsanto For Possible Mega-Merger
May 16, 2016
Bayer AG is exploring a potential bid for U.S. competitor Monsanto Co. in a deal that would create the world’s Read More
Latest News
Industry NewsCompass Minerals Names Protassium+ Sales Director
June 28, 2016
Compass Minerals, the producer of Protassium+ sulfate of potash, has named Scott Johnson director of sales for Protassium+ North America. Read More
Eric SfiligojThe British Leave Vote Impact On EU Agriculture
June 27, 2016
Like virtually everyone else in the world this past week, I’ve watched the global reaction to Britain’s vote to exit Read More
Valent David Nothmann
Crop InputsValent Names David Nothmann Vice President Of Marketing
June 27, 2016
Valent U.S.A. Corp. has announced the appointment of David Nothmann as vice president of marketing. Nothmann will be responsible for Read More
The Andersons Waterloo
ManagementFirst Indiana Facility Certified Under 4R Nutrient Stew…
June 27, 2016
The 4R Nutrient Stewardship Certification Program has announced that The Andersons, Inc.’s Waterloo, IN, facility has been added to its Read More
CropLife 100BRANDT Contributes To Mayo Clinic
June 27, 2016
BRANDT, a leading agriculture retailer and manufacturer of specialty agriculture products, has pledged a sizable donation to the Mayo Clinic Read More
ManagementReport: U.S. Farmland Values On Average Continue Gradua…
June 27, 2016
Land price movement has been in the forefront for farmers, landowners, lenders and land brokers for a decade now during Read More
AdjuvantsPrecision Laboratories Introduces Intact Xtra For Use W…
June 27, 2016
Precision Laboratories announces the launch of Intact Xtra, an adjuvant designed for applicators who want to maximize spray applications and Read More
Key Cooperative’s new liquid fertilizer, crop chemical, and seed facility in Grinnell, IA stores 1.5 million gallons of liquid fertilizer and 120,000 gallons of crop chemicals.
Retail FacilitiesKey Cooperative Facility Features The Latest In Murray …
June 27, 2016
When Key Cooperative wanted to improve the overall efficiency at its new state-of-the-art facility in Grinnell, IA, it turned to Read More
Allen Summers Asmark Institute PSM Training
EmployeesAsmark Institute Sponsors 25 ResponsibleAg Auditor Trai…
June 21, 2016
The Asmark Institute has announced plans to provide 25 scholarships through their affiliated State fertilizer and agrichemical associations to help encourage Read More
Kennebec Elevator
CropLife 100Wheat Growers Celebrates Kennebec Elevator Grand Openin…
June 21, 2016
Over 250 patrons and guests were on hand to celebrate Wheat Growers’ Kennebec Elevator grand opening. South Dakota Secretary of Read More
Land O Lakes
Industry NewsLand O’Lakes To Acquire Ceres
June 20, 2016
Land O’ Lakes, Inc. and Ceres, Inc. have announced that they have signed a definitive merger agreement under which Land O’Lakes Read More
Food IT
Industry NewsCalifornia Event Will Mix Ag And Tech Professionals To …
June 20, 2016
Silicon Valley is hot on agriculture, and an upcoming event in California will bring together the food and tech industries Read More
LegislationVilsack Christens WinField Crop Adventure, Talks Monsan…
June 17, 2016
The WinField Crop Adventure grand opening ceremonies at Fair Oaks Farms (near Winemac, IN) welcomed USDA Secretary of Agriculture Tom Read More
Crop InputsFields of the Future: WinField Doubles Down with Agri-E…
June 16, 2016
Land O’Lakes, Inc., joined by Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack, today will host Fields of the Future, a live broadcast about Read More
Bayer sign
Crop InputsMonsanto Turns Back Bayer Again
June 14, 2016
Bayer AG’s bid to buy Monsanto Co. for more than $60 billion has hit an impasse that could pose a Read More
Young Corn Field
Crop NutritionNext Generation Of Nitrogen Efficiency Technology Conve…
June 13, 2016
Commodity price projections indicate farmers will continue to face tight margins again this year. Delivering higher yields and more bushels Read More
Industry NewsLa Crosse Seed Acquires Cover Crop Solutions Brand
June 10, 2016
La Crosse Seed announces that it is the new and exclusive owner of the entire family of brands of Cover Read More