For the first time since 2007, U.S. farmers will have the choice to plant Genuity Roundup Ready alfalfa. The USDA has authorized resumption of the sale and planting of Monsanto Co.’s Roundup Ready alfalfa.
“This is great news for farmers who have been waiting for the green light to plant Roundup Ready alfalfa,” said Steve Welker, alfalfa commercial lead at Monsanto. “USDA’s action gives farmers the choice to enjoy the benefits of this product, including superior crop safety and high-quality yield opportunity.”
Roundup Ready alfalfa was developed by Monsanto and Forage Genetics International (FGI). The USDA decision comes in time for spring planting, the company noted. Monsanto, FGI and other alfalfa seed companies have varieties of Genuity Roundup Ready alfalfa seed in stock and ready for sale.
Roundup Ready alfalfa was commercialized in 2005. More than 5,000 farmers had planted Roundup Ready alfalfa on over 250,000 acres before a court ruling regarding USDA’s administrative process halted further sales and planting.
“The overwhelming positive feedback from the farmers who first planted Roundup Ready alfalfa and ongoing grower surveys indicate significant farmer interest in this product,” Welker said.
The final Environmental Impact Statement published by USDA in December concluded that one outcome of renewed planting could be an increase in quantity of high quality alfalfa hay produced by alfalfa growers. Roundup Ready alfalfa offers farmers healthier, faster-growing stands and hay with fewer weeds in every bale.