One of the greatest areas of challenge in cotton production is insect control. Now Cotton Incorporated, headquarter in Cary, N.C., has insured it will have a new generation of entomological expertise to help the organization face those insect challenges with a new director of agricultural research – entomology coming onboard.
The organization recently announced that Ryan Kurtz has joined their Agricultural and Environmental Research Division. He will be working with Dr. Pat O'Leary in the coming months to become familiar with her duties before she goes into retirement.
Kurtz has many talents that are important to Cotton Incorporated. The organization notes he is an expert on insect resistance management of Bt traits in both corn and cotton. Before coming to Cotton Incorporated he worked for Syngenta where he served as the global lead for traits insect resistance management.
Kurtz worked and studied with respected entomologists J.R. Bradley and John Van Duyn at N.C. State University while he earned his Ph.D from the school. During that period he increased his understanding of Bt resistance management in Bt crops for the control of cotton bollworms.
"A clear understanding of Bt resistance issues is increasingly critical to U.S. agriculture as more corn and cotton acreage is planted to hybrids and varieties containing Bt traits, and as cases of field resistance continue to be reported both domestically and internationally," explains Dr. Kater Hake, vice president of the AERD for Cotton Incorporated.
In 2000 Kurtz received his Bachelor's degree in Agricultural Pest Management from Mississippi State University.
In the announcement of Kurtz' installment in the new post. Cotton Incorporated spokepersons noted that "he will be working closely with Dr. O'Leary and the rest of the AERD team to ensure a smooth transition of priorities, plans and projects in this key discipline with the cotton production system.'
"Ryan's background and experience are tailored for this position and will allow him to identify new directions and initiatives for entomological research to benefit our U.S. producers," says O'Leary.
Learn more about Cotton Incorporated's people, goals and initiatives at www.cottoninc.com.