The European Commission announced it has approved grain corn with the Herculex I Insect Protection trait (known as 1507 within the regulatory system) for all food uses. This decision, combined with last year's approval of the trait for animal feed use, paves the way for import of grain and processed products with the Herculex I trait into the 25-nation European Union.
The Commission, in accordance with EU regulations, authorized corn with the Herculex I trait for food use following the EU's own independent scientific review. Final confirmation of the approval process is expected shortly and, at that time, EU import of corn with the Herculex I trait for all food, feed and processing purposes can begin.
The EU decision does not include Herculex RW and Herculex XTRA, nor does it allow import of grain stacked with both the Herculex I and Roundup Ready Corn 2 traits. These other traits and combinations have not yet been approved for import into the EU. EU approval of these traits and stacks is expected in the future.
With this EU decision, grain with the Herculex I trait will no longer be sold under the Market Choices certification mark, identifying products approved for food and feed use in the U.S. and Japan but not the EU, facilitating appropriate market-channeling.
Herculex I was developed in a research collaboration between Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc., a subsidiary of DuPont, and Dow AgroSciences LLC. It offers broad in-plant insect protection against European corn borer, southwestern corn borer, western bean cutworm, black cutworm and fall armyworm.
The EU approval of Herculex I applies only to grain importation and does not include approval of hybrids with the Herculex I trait for cultivation in EU countries. That approval is currently being sought. Herculex I is part of a family of traits developed for corn growers within the Pioneer/Dow AgroSciences research collaboration.
Other products currently offered in the U.S. market include Herculex RW Rootworm Protection and Herculex XTRA Insect Protection. Herculex RW provides in-plant protection against northern, western and Mexican corn rootworm; Herculex XTRA combines the protection benefits of Herculex I and Herculex RW, making it the broadest in-plant insect protection on the market.
All Herculex Insect Protection products provide tolerance to Liberty herbicide, which controls more than 100 grass and broadleaf weeds on contact, expanding the weed control options available to growers.