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Monsanto announces nine project advancements

Agriculture.com Staff 01/06/2011 @ 10:54am

Several projects across platforms and crops designed to improve farmers’ on-farm productivity and profitability advanced phases today as part of Monsanto’s annual pipeline update.

The company highlighted, in particular, key projects in its yield and stress pipeline collaboration with Germany-based BASF Plant Science, which last year was expanded to include wheat.  Yield and stress projects advancing phases this year include Nitrogen-Utilization Corn, Second-Generation Higher-Yielding Soybeans and Higher-Yielding/Stress Tolerant Wheat.

Following last year’s 11 project advancements, this year’s nine advances are testament to the depth of the company’s research and development (R&D) pipeline. Additionally, four of the advancements are new projects that were added to the pipeline, demonstrating that discovery work brings new opportunities.

“Our competitive R&D advantage comes because we identify needs in the marketplace and turn research into great products for farmers, and that allows us to create value,” said Robb Fraley, Monsanto chief technology officer.  “We continue to invest in significant crop opportunities with a balanced approach in our breeding and biotech platforms.  This approach puts us in the best position to extend our leadership and continue to deliver commercial products that benefit our farmer customers.”

Using a combination of the latest breeding and biotechnology tools and techniques and the company’s elite global germplasm base, Monsanto researchers are steadfast in their efforts to develop and deliver products that can help farmers produce more on each acre.   

The following products advance phases in 2011.

Yield and Stress Projects – in Collaboration with BASF

Monsanto and BASF Plant Science announced key project advancements demonstrating the success of the yield and stress collaboration.

  • Nitrogen-Utilization Corn (Advanced to Phase 2) – Nitrogen-Utilization Corn targets ways corn plants can use nitrogen more efficiently, exploring the potential to boost yield under normal nitrogen conditions or to stabilize yield in low nitrogen environments. 
  • Second-Generation Higher-Yielding Soybeans (Advanced to Phase 2) – When stacked with the first-generation soybean yield product and the higher yield opportunity of Genuity Roundup Ready 2 Yield, this product is designed to deliver improved yield compared with first-generation higher-yielding soybean varieties.  
  • Higher-Yielding/Stress Tolerant Wheat (in collaboration with BASF) and Herbicide-Tolerant Wheat (Both advanced to Phase 1) – Wheat has historically seen a lack of investment in technology compared to other crops. Since acquiring the WestBred brand in 2009, Monsanto has been committed to enhancing the productivity, sustainability and profitability of wheat by improving yield and grain quality. Wheat yield and stress technology, which would be stacked with herbicide-tolerance traits to offer multiple modes of weed control, would offer growers better yield potential under average stress growing conditions. 

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