Expanding Their Seed Horizons

The latest news in the seed/biotech sector includes:

  • DuPont business Pioneer Hi-Bred has opened a new research and greenhouse facility that brings together cutting-edge robotics/imaging and more.
  • Purchasing Triumph Seed further expands Dow AgroSciences LLC’s corn and sunflower business.

DuPont business Pioneer Hi-Bred has opened a new research and greenhouse facility that brings together cutting-edge robotics/imaging and more.

DuPont has opened the doors to a revolutionary approach to evaluating advanced plant genetics and new biotechnology traits that the company says will help increase productivity and provide the capability to grow test plants at an accelerated rate.

The 12,000-square-foot facility expands the capacity of proprietary FAST Corn — Functional Analysis System for Traits — technology and introduces robotics to facilitate testing 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. It increases testing throughput eight-fold over the original FAST Corn facility and process. FAST Corn allows researchers to grow corn to maturity in a fraction of the time required for traditional corn.

An important element of the FAST Corn process is the use of a fully automated digital imaging system to precisely measure the growth of a corn plant throughout its lifecycle. The imaging process quantifies growth and other visual data such as plant color. Advanced plant genetics and traits with beneficial properties can be quickly identified in the first or second generation and then advanced to a field testing program.

Purchasing Triumph Seed further expands Dow AgroSciences LLC’s corn and sunflower business.

The move will expand Dow AgroSciences’ plant biotechnology business — including its corn marketing areas in the U.S.

Triumph Seed, of Ralls, TX, began its seed business in 1965, and currently markets corn, sunflowers, and sorghum across the U.S. and in approximately 25 countries. Triumph has been one of the industry leaders in sunflowers and was the first company in the industry to market worldwide "short stature" sunflower hybrids.

The agreement includes all commercial, production, research, and development assets of the Triumph Seed business. Noble Koepp, president and owner of Triumph Seed, will continue to work with the business in a number of leadership and strategic planning activities.

Dow AgroSciences will continue to market Triumph seed under the Triumph brand to complement the company’s current Mycogen Seeds business. John Monko, a 28-year Dow AgroSciences’ veteran, will serve as general manager of Triumph Seed.

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