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DuPont VP outlines production challenges he sees over next decade

There is no one solution to crop production issues facing the agriculture industry, said James C. Collins, Jr., vice president and general manager of DuPont Crop Protection, yesterday at an international crop and pesticide chemistry forum in Kobe, Japan.

Collins said both chemical and genetic solutions are essential to meeting the demands the future will have on agriculture. An example is the Optimum® GAT® trait from DuPont. It will help farmers control more weeds and weeds that have developed resistance to popular herbicides by combining a new biotech trait with new chemical weed control solutions. In soybeans, company officials say the trait is going to help boost overall yield.

"Technology will drive change in the years ahead. Innovation is key to the future, including seed and chemical collaborations. Replacing older technologies with safer, more effective crop solutions will lead to growth opportunities for companies that understand this trend," Collins said. "Demand for proprietary products has risen steadily over the past six years, underscoring the need for novel crop protection products and growers' willingness to pay for them.

"Science and innovation in seed and chemistry will be key to increasing agricultural productivity to levels needed to meet the demands," Collins said. "The impact of biotechnology also remains dramatic, and consumer acceptance will become more favorable as direct benefits can be demonstrated."

According to Collins, a number of factors are impacting the industry in 2006 and beyond:

  • A complex global regulatory decision-making process;
  • Product re-registration timelines;
  • Uncertainties such as terrorism, price/availability of oil and water, natural disasters;
  • Energy prices;
  • Future commodity crop price levels;
  • Government support for agriculture; and
  • Traits and geographic expansion for genetically modified crops.

There is no one solution to crop production issues facing the agriculture industry, said James C. Collins, Jr., vice president and general manager of DuPont Crop Protection, yesterday at an international crop and pesticide chemistry forum in Kobe, Japan.

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