Indicators Pointing Up

The need for increased food and fiber production lead three global “mega-trends” that will light the path to a bright future for agriculture, a leader from the crop protection industry told members of the Southern Crop Production Association (SCPA) at its recent annual meeting in Savannah, GA.

According to John Chrosniak, regional business director, North America, DuPont Crop Protection, a boost in agricultural productivity through technology — on the same or marginally more available farmland — is critical for the world to keep pace with significant growth in both population and personal wealth in the world’s less developed countries.

While the world’s population has grown 12% since 1997, consumption of soybeans has increased 40% and corn 22% in the same period. Increased standards of living in less developed countries, where virtually all of the world’s population growth is occurring, equates to greater demand overall for agricultural products.

China alone will use 78% of the world’s 27-million-ton increase in soybean imports in the next decade, said Chrosniak, also a member of CropLife’s PACE® Advisory Council. Argentina will crush 3 million tons of soybeans per year, he said.

Reins Of Leadership

At its 53rd annual meeting in Savannah, SCPA elected new officers for 2007-08:

 President: Fred Worthington, Cardinal Chemicals
  Vice President: Tony Durham, Syngenta Crop Protection
 Secretary/Treasurer: Pete Irwin, BASF Corp.
 Past President (Ex-oficio): Charles Morris, DuPont Crop Protection
Ed Duskin continues as executive vice president. Also its meeting, SCPA presented its LaRue Award for outstanding service to Steve Hutton, Dow AgroSciences.

More Production, Less Land

Meanwhile, the total crop areas harvested to keep up with food and fiber demand have grown only 2% in 10 years, opening up a clear need to continue increasing farming productivity. To date, technology has helped agriculture answer the call through greater productivity. For instance, during the past 25 years the global area for corn has risen 10% while production has expanded 56%, in effect creating what Chrosniak termed 150 million “virtual acres.”

Cotton consumption likewise is growing, Chrosniak said, projecting that the current 80- to 90-million-bale annual use levels of recent years will climb to more than 100 million bales by 2015. China alone will account for 47% of world cotton imports in eight years, pacing the world’s textile giants which also include India and Pakistan.

In the crop protection sector and for DuPont in particular, the goal is to develop inputs that are better, more effective as a contributor to yield growth, and safer, using a blend of biology, chemistry, and environmental stewardship/sustainability. DuPont also is looking to enhance nutrition through bioscience. The company’s innovations in this area have included no-trans-fat soybean oil and high-oleic soybean oil.

On To Biofuels, Safer Food

Beyond the need for a greater quantity of food and fiber, Chrosniak also cited the mega-trend tandem of consumers’ call for greater safety/security and renewable energy/materials as key drivers for agriculture in the coming years.

Biofuel consumption will grow in North America from 5 billion gallons to more than 30 billion gallons in 2020, at a growth rate of about 14% per year, Chrosniak predicted. Adoption will be even greater in the European Union, Eurasia and the Asia-Pacific region — a growth rate of 25% annually. In preparation, DuPont is developing cellulosic biofuels and has entered into a partnership with British Petroleum (BP) to develop and launch biobutanol.

Meanwhile, safe and wholesome foods which are also available and affordable are a growing consumer priority, as are natural fibers that are safe and comfortable as well as reliable and affordable.

To respond to these market shifts, crop producers will be asking their suppliers and key business partners to “keep me connected” — “make my life easier; keep me informed about weather and markets; help me use data for business and crop management,” according to Chrosniak. Add it all up, and for astute crop producers and agribusinesses who are attuned to global changes, significant opportunities lie on the road ahead. 

Leave a Reply

Management Stories

ManagementMACA 2014: The State Of The Agricultural Industry, And Then Some
October 9, 2014
The trade association’s annual gathering featured speakers from across agriculture and beyond. Read More
StewardshipA Multi-Layered Approach To Water Quality
October 6, 2014
Illinois event highlights research and technology designed to better monitor and improve water quality — and the benefits of cooperative, coordinated effort. Read More
StewardshipMichigan Agriculture Leaders On Toledo Water Ban: We Want To Be Part Of The Conversation
August 8, 2014
Leaders of Michigan agricultural organizations said Thursday that the government should not have a “knee-jerk reaction” based on last weekend’s water ban in Toledo due to fertilizer run-off in Lake Erie. Read More
ManagementRussia Bans U.S. And EU Ag Product Imports In Ukraine Sanctions Battle
August 7, 2014
Russian President Vladimir Putin has banned the import of agricultural goods from countries that have imposed sanctions on Russia. Read More

Trending Articles

Crop InputsPlatform Specialty Products To Acquire Arysta LifeScience
October 20, 2014
Once the acquisition is complete, Platform Specialty Products will combine Arysta LifeScience with previously acquired companies Agriphar and Chemtura Crop Solutions. Read More
Seed/BiotechMonsanto Offers New Support For Ferguson, Area Communities
October 8, 2014
Monsanto Co. has committed $1 million in new support for several collaborative efforts in Ferguson, MO, and surrounding communities in North St. Louis County. Read More
Seed/BiotechUnapproved Genetically Modified Wheat Found In Montana
October 3, 2014
USDA reports that one year after discovery of Monsanto's unapproved wheat in a single Oregon field disrupted U.S. wheat export sales, the GMO wheat has again been found in Montana. Read More
Equipment2014 Product Of The Year Voting
September 19, 2014
The deadline to vote for the 2014 CropLife IRON Product of the Year is October 31. Please cast your vote today to help us determine the winner. Read More
FertilizerFall Fertility 2014: Forecasting Fertilizer Use
September 7, 2014
Great crops this year have tapped the soil, and fall work is definitely called for, but how challenging will that get? Read More
CropLife 100CHS To Build $3 Billion Fertilizer Plant In North Dakota
September 5, 2014
The fertilizer plant in Spiritwood will be the single largest investment in CHS history, as well as the single largest private investment project ever undertaken in North Dakota. Read More

Latest News

CropLife 100GROWMARK Announces Appointments In Plant Food Division
October 22, 2014
GROWMARK, Inc. has announced the three key staff changes in its Plant Food Division. Read More
CropLife 100GROWMARK Appoints New VP Of Finance And Risk Management
October 22, 2014
Wade Mittelstadt has been named GROWMARK Vice President, Financial and Risk Mangement, effective December 1, 2014. Read More
FungicidesEPA Approves BASF In-Furrow Corn Fungicide
October 22, 2014
Field trials show Xanthion In-furrow fungicide provides more rapid emergence, extended residual control and improved seedling health than untreated crops. Read More
EquipmentAgraScout App Available At No Cost To Universities
October 21, 2014
AgraScout, a fast and easy to use mobile crop scouting app, is now available at no cost to University students, Read More
LegislationNew Farm Bill Program To Provide Relief To Farmers Affe…
October 21, 2014
The USDA has implemented a new Farm Bill initiative that will provide relief to farmers affected by severe weather, including drought. Read More
ManagementGreenfield Scholars Program Aims To Sustain Agronomy Wo…
October 21, 2014
The program encourages talented students to study agronomy, crop and soil sciences while cultivating networks to develop the necessary workforce to sustain the profession. Read More
Paul SchrimpfPrecision Ag: Taking It To The Hill
October 21, 2014
A new coalition took the good news message of precision agriculture to Washington, DC, last month. Read More
ManagementUSDA Awards $18 Million In Small Business Research Gran…
October 21, 2014
The grants will provide high quality, advanced research and development that will lead to technological innovations and solutions for American agriculture. Read More
FertilizerCF Industries Terminates Merger Discussions With Yara I…
October 21, 2014
CF Industries Holdings and Yara International have terminated their discussions regarding a potential merger of equals transaction. Read More
Seed/BiotechSyngenta Ranked A Top 10 Biotech Employer For Third tim…
October 20, 2014
Syngenta ranked in the top 10 among the world’s top biotech employers, according to an annual survey conducted by Science magazine. Read More
CropLife 100Wheat Growers Break Ground For New Facility At Kennebec
October 20, 2014
Wheat Growers has broke ground for a state-of-the-art shuttle loader grain handling, fertilizer and agronomy facility in Kennebec, SD. Read More
FertilizerVerdesian Life Sciences Signs Agreement With Los Alamos…
October 20, 2014
Verdesian Life Sciences has signed a licensing agreement with Los Alamos National Laboratory to develop and market LANL’s latest nitrogen enhancement technology for plants. Read More
MicronutrientsStoller Group Announces Groundbreaking At New Office Bu…
October 20, 2014
Jerry Stoller, founder and president of Stoller Group, announced the groundbreaking at the site of the company’s future headquarters in Read More
Crop InputsBioSafe Systems Opens New Production Facility In Nevada
October 20, 2014
BioSafe Systems has completed construction of a state-of-art production facility in Sparks, NV, for its line of activated peroxygen products. Read More
Crop InputsPlatform Specialty Products To Acquire Arysta LifeScien…
October 20, 2014
Once the acquisition is complete, Platform Specialty Products will combine Arysta LifeScience with previously acquired companies Agriphar and Chemtura Crop Solutions. Read More
Seed/BiotechEPA Approves Dow’s Enlist Duo Herbicide
October 15, 2014
The Enlist Weed Control System, breakthrough technology to fight resistant and tough weeds, has received the long-awaited green light from federal regulatory authorities. Read More
MicronutrientsGypsum On Farms Could Help Keep Water Clean, Not Green
October 14, 2014
Gypsum, which has roots in the past as a farm soil treatment, also may have a bright future, and not just as a booster of crops but also as a protector of water. Read More
Photo credit: The United Soybean Board/The Soybean Checkoff.
Crop InputsVerdesian Grows Sales Staff
October 14, 2014
The new account managers will drive sales growth and support relationships with key customers in the plant nutrition and seed treatment and inoculants product categories. Read More