Bayer: Growers, Honeybees Will Love Our New Planter Lubricant

As part of its commitment to sustainable agriculture, Bayer CropScience today announced very favorable field trial results of its new seed application technology, which is designed to further reduce potential dust exposure to honey bees during a typical planting process, while offering improved handling efficiencies to corn farmers.

The use of lubricants, such as talc and graphite, are a standard recommendation by seed planter manufacturers to reduce friction and improve uniformity, but recent scientific publications on this topic have triggered a debate as to the relationship between the already low level of exposure of dust from these planters and potential acute effects on bees. As an alternative, the new Bayer fluency agent – made of a polyethylene wax substrate – was shown to significantly decrease dust and emissions during laboratory testing:

  • Ninety percent reduction in total dust versus talc.
  • Sixty percent reduction in total dust versus graphite.

To follow up on the promising laboratory research, this past spring, Bayer conducted large-scale field studies – covering more than 40,000 acres – throughout North America with growers and in collaboration with major planter manufacturers in the U.S. and Canada. The purpose of these trials was to evaluate the new fluency agent’s commercial viability under field conditions.

“We were impressed by the success of this new fluency agent when we examined the field trial results,” said Bill Hairston, director of product development, SeedGrowth, Bayer CropScience. “Although potential exposure from corn planting is relatively rare, cooperation among applicators, growers and beekeepers is a critical part of effective best-management practices for seed treatment applications and important for pollinator health.”

Based on feedback, growers who participated in the trials thought the new fluency agent:

  • Performed equal to or better than comparable talc or graphite lubricants.
  • Was less dusty during application and was easier to avoid dust when checking boxes.
  • Showed equivalent results at significantly lower use rates than talc when comparing planting uniformity.

When asked to describe his experience with the Bayer fluency agent, Ed Benjamins, a grower from Ontario, Canada said, “It’s pretty simple really; easy to apply, a lot smaller quantity. It worked equal or better than regular talc; absolutely no issues whatsoever.”

Bayer will finalize its analysis of the results of the field trials and work with growers, planter equipment manufacturers and other stakeholders to determine the commercial viability of its fluency agent.

Bayer has been actively involved in finding solutions to improve honey bee health for more than 25 years. Its Bee Care Program includes initiatives designed to further bee health research, engagement and discussion and bring Bayer’s extensive experience and knowledge in bee health under one platform. Bee Care Program initiatives include:

  • Bayer’s participation in National Pollinator Week continued to raise awareness about the importance of honey bees to agriculture through a reception on the Hill, employee family day, inaugural community leadership award and second annual Pollinator Pledge.
  • The North American Bee Care Center, which broke ground in May at the North American Bayer CropScience Headquarters in Research Triangle Park, NC, will aid the advancement of honey bee research by providing a state-of-the-art facility to support worldwide bee health initiatives.
  • The Bee Care Tour, a mobile exhibit which traveled to Midwestern university agriculture schools this spring to foster education and collaboration among growers, beekeepers, researchers and others interested in honey bee health.
  • The Bee Ambassador Program, a field staff training campaign dedicated to cultivating dialogue and awareness around topics related to honey bee management and health.

Bayer is dedicated to crop protection and is committed to environmental stewardship and sustainable agricultural practices, including the protection of beneficial insects such as honey bees.

Topics: ,

Leave a Reply

Equipment Stories

CropLife 100Southern States Coop Hosting Drone Flight This Friday
August 3, 2015
Southern States Cooperative — No. 9 on the CropLife 100 — is hosting an FAA-approved drone demonstration at Grandview Farms Read More
EquipmentFarmLink Launches Farm Equipment Sharing Program
July 23, 2015
FarmLink has introduced a new online farm equipment sharing community – MachineryLink Sharing – leveraging this new economy business model Read More
EquipmentKinze Celebrating 50 Years This Summer
July 15, 2015
Fifty years after its humble beginning as a small welding shop, Kinze Manufacturing is reflecting on a half-century of innovation Read More
EquipmentDeere, Case And Other Equipment Companies Join Forces On Planter Design Standard
July 14, 2015
As many of you already know, generally speaking there isn’t a whole lot of reaching across the aisle going on Read More
Top 100 Articles
CropLife 100Southern States Coop Hosting Drone Flight This Friday
August 3, 2015
Southern States Cooperative — No. 9 on the CropLife 100 — is hosting an FAA-approved drone demonstration at Grandview Farms Read More
CropLife 100Allied Ag Distributors Adds Four New Owners
July 30, 2015
Aligned Ag Distributors LLC has announced the addition of four new customer/owners to Franklin Holding Co. LLC. They are: The Read More
CropLife 100Pinnacle Purchases California-Based Specialty Crops Retailer
July 20, 2015
Pinnacle Agriculture Holdings has successfully acquired California-based NH3 Service Co.  Operating as part of Pinnacle’s Performance Agriculture brand, the new locations Read More
Asmus Farm Supply liquid fertilizer facility features 20,000 square feet
CropLife 100Slideshow: Asmus Farm Supply Shows Off Its New Liquid Fertilizer Facility
July 15, 2015
Asmus Farm Supply, Rake, IA, recently added a new liquid fertilizer facility to its company operations. The new liquid fertilizer Read More
CropLife 100Wilbur-Ellis Feed Division Facilities Receive Safe Feed/Safe Food Certification
July 13, 2015
Wilbur-Ellis Co.’s Feed Division, a marketer and distributor of value-added feed ingredients for the aquaculture, livestock and pet food industries Read More
CropLife 100BRANDT Expands To Brazil With Acquisition
July 8, 2015
BRANDT has acquired a majority interest in Target Brasil Fertilizantes Ltda. through its Brazilian subsidiary. Target Brasil manufactures, distributes and Read More
Latest News
StewardshipOhio Grower: Why Water Quality Matters To Me
August 3, 2015
Fresh off the first anniversary of last summer’s unfortunate Toledo Water Crisis — which was largely attributed in mainstream media Read More
Young soybean field
Industry NewsH.J. Baker To Build New Facility In Emporia, KS
August 3, 2015
H.J. Baker has announced the expansion of its Animal Health and Nutrition division with the ground breaking of a new Read More
Young corn plants
Crop InputsNufarm Reorganizing Ag, Industrial Vegetation Managemen…
August 3, 2015
Today Nufarm announced a reorganization of its Agriculture and Industrial Vegetation Management sales and marketing organizations effective August 1, 2015. Read More
StewardshipExcellence Through Stewardship Reaches 30 Members
August 3, 2015
Excellence Through Stewardship, a non-profit that promotes the adoption of best practices and stewardship in agricultural technology, reached the milestone Read More
CropLife 100Southern States Coop Hosting Drone Flight This Friday
August 3, 2015
Southern States Cooperative — No. 9 on the CropLife 100 — is hosting an FAA-approved drone demonstration at Grandview Farms Read More
CropLife 100Allied Ag Distributors Adds Four New Owners
July 30, 2015
Aligned Ag Distributors LLC has announced the addition of four new customer/owners to Franklin Holding Co. LLC. They are: The Read More
FungicidesReport: Sudden Death Syndrome Symptoms Appearing In Soy…
July 30, 2015
Last week, symptoms of sudden death syndrome (SDS) began to appear in April 15-planted soybeans at the University of Illinois’s Read More
Seed/BiotechAdvanta Seeds Adds New Phoenix Corn Hybrids
July 30, 2015
Corn growers in the High Plains and Western states have new options available for the 2016 growing season from Advanta Read More
ManagementTechnology and agriculture: a Futurist’s Perspective
July 30, 2015
Futurist David Zach, speaking at this week’s InfoAg Conference in St. Louis, shared thoughts on the benefits and limitations of Read More
Biofuels Plant in Lousiana
Industry NewsIdle Biofuels Plant In Louisiana To Reopen As Ammonia F…
July 30, 2015
A Lithuania-based company plans to spend $265 million to reopen an idle biofuels refinery in Grant Parish as an ammonia Read More
FFA at Monsanto Booth at the 2015 National Farm Machinery Show
Industry NewsFive Students Receive The 2015 Monty’s Plant Food Compa…
July 29, 2015
This fall, five college-bound students will have financial support through the Monty’s Plant Food Company FFA Scholarship. All five scholarship Read More
GYPSOIL Blendable Pellets
Crop InputsBeneficial Reuse Management Launches Pelletized Gypsum …
July 29, 2015
Beneficial Reuse Management (BRM) announced this week at Ag Media Summit that its GYPSOIL Pelletized Products Division will open a Read More
StewardshipOhio Water Quality Project To Determine How Much Phosph…
July 27, 2015
Researchers with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at The Ohio State University are looking for farmers in Read More
FertilizerKoch Agronomic Services Launches N-TEGRATION Technology
July 27, 2015
Koch Agronomic Services, LLC (KAS) has launched  N-TEGRATION Technology, a process technology platform designed to enable production of enhanced efficiency fertilizers at Read More
HerbicidesExpert: IARC Herbicide Classifications Leading To Confu…
July 24, 2015
Few people in the crop protection industry had heard of the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) before this Read More
ManagementFCI Trade Summit Update & Precision Tank Turns 50
July 23, 2015
Editors Dave Frabotta and Eric Sfiligoj discuss the upcoming FCI Trade Summit in Las Vegas, NV, and how Precision Tank Read More
Palmer pigweed seedhead in cotton
HerbicidesUSDA Deregulates Dow AgroSciences’ Enlist Cotton Trait
July 23, 2015
The USDA today issued its decision deregulating Dow AgroSciences’ Enlist cotton trait in the U.S. The USDA has now completed its Read More
Industry NewsVerdesian Life Sciences Showcases Versatile Product Por…
July 23, 2015
Technology has revolutionized agriculture by bringing farmers, retailers and distributors to the forefront of the digital age. To meet the Read More