The curtain has come down on another Commodity Classic. This year's meeting of the American Soybean Association, National Corn Growers Association and, for the first time, the National Association of Wheat Growers, provided visitors plenty of information. During the event, companies also hold media conferences to announce new products. Here's a review of the conferences. They're listed in the order they occurred during the event.
BASF to promote productivity
The need to produce more corn to meet a burgeoning biofuels need is an opportunity for crop protection companies to show how their products fit. For BASF, which promotes the Plant Health concept that brings a new relationship with the National Corn Growers Association. The company announced it was in discussions to work with NCGA to develop a program to educate growers on best agronomic practices to meet a rising demand. The company notes "this partnership emphasizes the vision shared by the NCGA and BASF to work toward building and enhancing opportunities for corn producers." Details of the partnership were not immediately available, but a BASF spokesperson explains that the two groups are working on ways to educate growers about better ways to enhance productivity and profitability. Learn more as information becomes available from www.agproducts.basf.com.
Pioneer, DuPont talk tech
DuPont announced just before the meeting that it will invest $100 million to increase its speed to market for new seed products. During it's Commodity Classic conference Pioneer and DuPont outlined information regarding the company's work on biofuels. DuPont's Chief Innovation Officer Tom Connelly, talked about the company's work on both new biofuels from ag products, but also told media of the company's work on boosting biofuel output from each acre. William Niebur, vice president, DuPont Crop Genetics Research and Development, explains the $100 million investment is the largest year-to-year increase in research in the 81-year history of the Pioneer business. You can learn more at www.pioneer.com.
Monsanto launches YieldGard VT
Monsanto, St. Louis, Missouri, announced the launch of its first new YieldGard VT product for corn. VT stands for VecTran technology, a more precise method of inserting new genes into corn chromosomes. The “rifle shot” method results in “hotter” stack-trait hybrids with improved consistency, better insect protection and high yield potential that the first-generation YieldGard products, according to Monsanto. The company’s first YieldGard VT product is YieldGard VT Triple. It contains YieldGard Rootworm and YieldGard corn borer traits and Roundup Ready2 technology. There will be a limited launch this year on approximately 1 million acres mainly in Iowa and Illinois. For more information, see www.monsanto.com.
Syngenta launches Prefix
There's a new herbicide coming to market from Syngenta for soybeans. Prefix, a premix of S-metolachlor (the active ingredient in Dual Magnum herbicide) and fomesafen (the active ingredient in Reflex and Flexstar herbicides), offers preemergence control of both grasses and broadleaf weeds in soybeans. It is the first preemergence use for fomesafen. Prefix is part of an early weed control strategy aimed at reducing the risk of glyphosate resistance in soybeans. Learn more by visiting www.syngentacropprotection-us.com.
New tech from Deere
Deere rolled out its OptiGro system for corn and wheat, which allows a grower to get in-field, in-season information about crop use of nitrogen. That information can be used to better apply nitrogen in the coming growing season. The company also launched it's Swath Pro Control for planters, allowing precise planter unit control. And there's a new program from the company's Apex Farm Management Software that allows users to develop new reports for crop insurance claims. Learn more at www.JohnDeere.com/ag.
Growth promoters from EMD
EMD Crop , Milwaukee, Wis., introduced two growth promoters for cereal crops and corn. Revv, a seed treatment, promotes early growth in corn. Wave is a seed applied product for wheat and barley. Revv triggers a variety of growth responses, such as accelerated emergence and improved vigor, plant height, stalk girth and chlorophyll content. In trials over three years, the average yield increase has been three bushels per acre. Rev will be able only in Beck Hybrids this year. Wave is contains asospirillum, a natural occurring bacterium. It promotes root growth and mass development. Yield increases have averaged 3-5 bushels per acre more than 80% of the time in trials. For more information, contact Pat Reed at (715) 693-8777 or patrick.reed@emdcropscience or see www.emdcropscience.com.
Bayer offers insight to new products
A key discussion point for herbicide makers at Commodity Classic came through many media briefings: early weed control gives you more productivity. Bayer CropScience offered information showing Iowa State University and Ohio State University research proving early weed control can enhance yields; and that multiple modes of action prevent weed resistance. In addition, the company has unveiled its Growing Strong Rewards Program for 2007 where growers have the opportunity to treat up to 6.5% of their acres for free with Bayer CropScience products. Finally, Stratego fungicide may receive its Section 3 approval for use on soybeans this season. Company representatives are optimistic that this will occur. Learn more at www.bayercropscienceus.com.
Syngenta Seeds offers grower alternatives
Growers have a choice if they choose Syngenta Seeds products. That's the message the company gave media attending the Tampa event this year. Through its AgriEdge soybean program a grower can earn up to 21 cents per bushel for the first 60 bushels per acre on their crop in 2007. That program, which requires use of Syngenta seeds and crop protection products, has been boosting soybean orders, the company reports. A grower must increase their NK soybean order by 200 units to qualify. The AgriSure trait line is advancing with corn borer, rootworm, and glyphosate-tolerance technology available - in fact instead of a triple-stack the company's seed brands using Agrisure traits offer essentially a quad-stack when you count built-in Liberty Link technology. Visit www.syngenta.com/en/products_services/field_crops.aspx for information on the Syngenta Seeds family of products.
FMC launches Hero insecticide
When it comes to controlling bugs, farmers want them knocked down fast, and kept down with some residual control. A new insecticide just labeled by FMC - Hero EC - does just that. The pyrethroid insecticide will stop a broad spectrum of pests and provide residual control. The insecticide has been labeled for field, seed and sweet corn; cotton; tomatoes; eggplant; peppers; head lettuce; head and stem brassicas; succulent peas and beans; and pecans. The company also launched Authority First DF herbicide for 2007. The preplant soybean herbicide controls a range of broadleaf weeds. The product is a premix of sulfentrazone (active ingredient in the original Authority herbicide) and cloransulam-methyl (active ingredient in Dow's FirstRate herbicide), which FMC licensed from Dow AgroSciences. Learn more about these two crop protection products by visiting cropsolutions.fmc.com.