Recognizing the need to preserve the viability of technologies that farmers depend upon, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) in conjunction with university weed scientists and leading developers of agricultural crop protection products, has developed an online Weed Resistance Management Learning Center (WRMLC) to educate growers and ag industry professionals on how to reduce the development of resistant weeds.
Now accessible at www.ncga.com, the WRMLC was produced by NCGA with the support of industry partners including BASF, Bayer CropScience, Dow AgroSciences, Monsanto and Syngenta. The WRMLC is the second installment in NCGA's grower education strategy, following the release of the Insect Resistance Management Learning Center in March 2004.
In both Learning Centers, participants go through a series of simple 'how-to' lessons on steps they can take to manage against resistance. Each audio/visual lesson contains interactive learning exercises. The WRMLC is approved by the American Society of Agronomy for Certified Crop Advisors to earn continuing education units.
"NCGA is pleased to provide producers and industry a platform to receive education on integrated weed resistance management strategies for both conventional and biotech crops," says Darrin Ihnen, chair of the NCGA Biotech Working Group. "Our grower members depend upon herbicide technology and management against the development of resistant weeds is crucial to maintain that option. That makes the WRMLC central to our mission."
The WRMLC focuses on a variety of resistance management strategies, including use of herbicides with different modes of action and implementation of cultural weed control methods. Its content reflects the scientific databases and conclusions of the Herbicide Resistance Action Committee (HRAC) and the Weed Science Society of America. HRAC is an international body founded by the agrochemical industry.
"It is critical that everyone involved with developing, marketing and applying crop protection technology in the field work together to prevent the loss of valuable crop production tools," Ihnen says. "The WRMLC is a positive step forward in helping us to that."