Monsanto said preliminary results show key corn seed products outperforming competitors, particularly in areas hit by hot summer temperatures, though it cautioned the U.S. harvest is still in its early stages.
The St. Louis-based seed company said its top seed brand, DeKalb, is showing "better than average performance relative to competitors" in areas hit by heat and stress this year. That would include much of the corn belt, as Illinois and Iowa both recorded their hottest summers in decades.
The company said in a slide presentation released Wednesday that preliminary results "support the expectation" that Monsanto's premium SmartStax corn seed outyielded an earlier generation seed. The company cautioned, however, that it is too early in the harvest season for "significant data analysis."
Monsanto's SmartStax seed produced what some analysts saw as disappointing yields in its first year of widespread use in 2010, underperforming legacy products despite having a higher price. The company said last year that improved hybrids would lead to improved performance over time, and emphasized that it is best-suited for areas of the northern U.S. corn belt.
The company announced fourth-quarter earnings Wednesday, and released the slides ahead of an investor conference call scheduled for 9:30 a.m. EDT.
Monsanto shares were recently up 3.1% to $64.90 pre-market. The stock is down 9.6% this year.
-By Ian Berry, Dow Jones Newswires; 312-750-4072; firstname.lastname@example.org
(END) Dow Jones Newswires
October 05, 2011 09:23 ET (13:23 GMT)
DJ Monsanto Says Corn Outyielding Competition In Early Results->copyright