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

Illinois Researchers
FertilizerMeasure Of Age In Soil Nitrogen Could Help Precision Agriculture
July 26, 2016
What’s good for crops is not always good for the environment. Nitrogen, a key nutrient for plants, can cause problems Read More
Case sprayer nozzle closeup
EquipmentAgronomists, CCAs, Custom Applicators Invited To FSR Agronomy College
July 19, 2016
Agronomists, Certified Crop Advisers (CCA) and custom applicators can stay current on agronomy issues on the grounds of the Farm Read More
SprayersCNH Industrial Extends Miller Nitro Sprayer Distribution To Case IH
July 12, 2016
CNH Industrial announces an additional distribution channel for its Miller branded high-clearance sprayers in the U.S. through its Case IH Application Read More
PrecisionAg Vision Conference
Precision AgSix Reasons Senior Executives Must Attend The First-Ever PrecisionAg Vision Conference
July 11, 2016
As I made a West Coast swing this spring to visit companies including The Climate Corp. and Planet Labs, there Read More
Trending Articles
Heritage Cooperative
Retail FacilitiesKahler Automation Designs State-Of-The-Art Facility For Heritage Cooperative
July 4, 2016
Heritage Cooperative in Marysville, OH, needed an efficient liquid, dry and grain facility to serve the many needs of their Read More
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
Latest News
Illinois Researchers
FertilizerMeasure Of Age In Soil Nitrogen Could Help Precision Ag…
July 26, 2016
What’s good for crops is not always good for the environment. Nitrogen, a key nutrient for plants, can cause problems Read More
Kochia
Crop InputsNufarm Launches New Herbicide for Resistant Kochia
July 25, 2016
Nufarm introduces Scorch herbicide for U.S. farmers and ranchers combating a broad range of troublesome broadleaf weeds. A unique premix Read More
ManagementNew Rabobank Report Calls for Farmer ROI Focus
July 25, 2016
As U.S. row crop farmers brace themselves for a third year of negative margins, Rabobank believes farmers must lower the Read More
Syngenta Sign
Crop InputsBloomberg: Syngenta-Chem China Deal on Track for Regula…
July 25, 2016
Syngenta AG, which has agreed to be taken over by China National Chemical Corp. for $43 billion, said talks with Read More
ManagementGROWMARK Meeting Visit, Company Takeover Updates, and R…
July 22, 2016
Editors Paul Schrimpf and Eric Sfiligoj discuss their recent speaking engagement at GROWMARK’s eastern event, crop protection company merger rumors, Read More
Crop InputsMonsanto: EU Approves Roundup Ready 2 Xtend Imports
July 22, 2016
Monsanto Co. announced today that the European Commission has granted import approval for Roundup Ready 2 Xtend soybeans. This milestone Read More
Syngenta headquarters in Basel, Switzerland
Crop InputsSyngenta Announces Alfalfa Seed Split Off
July 22, 2016
On September 1, 2016, Syngenta will transfer sales and distribution of alfalfa seed to the NEXGROW branded business that is Read More
Dow DuPont
Crop InputsDuPont, Dow Shareholders Approve Merger
July 21, 2016
DuPont and The Dow Chemical Company announced that, at their respective special meetings of stockholders held today, stockholders of both Read More
ManagementLand O’Lakes Announces SUSTAIN Business Unit, Oth…
July 20, 2016
Land O’Lakes, Inc. today announced the formal organization of a new business unit, SUSTAIN, and its leadership. SUSTAIN will focus Read More
Monsanto Luling Plant
Crop InputsReport: Bayer Shareholder Proposes Monsanto ‘Host…
July 20, 2016
One of Bayer AG’s top 20 shareholders said Wednesday it may make sense for the life-science company to launch an Read More
Young Corn Closeup
Industry NewsNew Leaf Symbiotics Snags Former Monsanto Microbials Le…
July 20, 2016
NewLeaf Symbiotics, announced today the appointment of Dr. Janne Kerovuo as Vice President for Research and Discovery.  Dr. Kerovuo comes Read More
Corn and ditch
ManagementStudy: Saturated Buffers Reduce Nitrates From Subsurfac…
July 19, 2016
The Agricultural Drainage Management Coalition (ADMC), Agricultural Drainage Management Systems Task Force and Dr. Dan Jaynes with the National Laboratory Read More
Case sprayer nozzle closeup
EquipmentAgronomists, CCAs, Custom Applicators Invited To FSR Ag…
July 19, 2016
Agronomists, Certified Crop Advisers (CCA) and custom applicators can stay current on agronomy issues on the grounds of the Farm Read More
Soybean Field
LegislationOhio Soybean Association Names Brian Hill Legislator Of…
July 19, 2016
The Ohio Soybean Association (OSA) has announced that State Representative Brian Hill (R-Zanesville) has been named one of two Legislators of Read More
Eric SfiligojThe Latest Monsanto Rumors: A Game Of Tones
July 18, 2016
When companies are engaged in the back-and-forth of the acquisition game, the tone of their various announcements is always important. Read More
Nozzle spray close-up
AdjuvantsWest Central Distribution Introduces New Elite Family O…
July 14, 2016
West Central Distribution recently released a new line of Elite adjuvants to work alongside the new herbicide technologies that combat Read More
Bayer sign
Crop InputsBayer Makes New Offer For Monsanto
July 14, 2016
Bayer AG boosted its takeover offer for Monsanto Co. to about $65 billion in a bid to overcome the U.S. Read More
ManagementAn Update on Water
July 14, 2016
CropLife Editors Eric Sfiligoj and Matthew Grassi discuss agricultural water issues in conjunction with a recent field trip in Ohio. Read More