ST. LOUIS (July 14, 2010) – Farmers across the United States are getting a first-hand look at Monsanto Company’s pipeline of corn, soybean and cotton technologies to help them increase yields, improve efficiencies and conserve resources at this summer’s Technology Showcase Tours sponsored by Genuity®. Among the research and development innovations drawing interest at the Midwestern showcases are Monsanto’s 5 percent refuge-in-the-bag (RIB) product concepts for Genuity® SmartStax™ corn and Genuity® VT Double PRO™ corn.

These single-bag options, now pending regulatory approval, would provide Corn Belt farmers both simplicity and enhanced compliance in insect refuge management by eliminating the need for planting a separate, potentially lower yielding refuge. Once approved, Monsanto brands will offer farmers these in-the-bag refuge options for Genuity SmartStax and Genuity VT Double PRO under the name RIB Complete.

“Monsanto, cooperator farmers and universities are evaluating the RIB concept at up to 1,000 locations, including several of our Genuity Technology Showcase sites in the Corn Belt,” said Chism Craig, Monsanto Technical Development Manager. “This broad-acre trial program will enable us to evaluate our refuge-in-the bag product under a wide range of geographies and growing conditions, and also help educate farmers about the RIB concept, which, after approval, we will market under the name RIB Complete.”

Planting a refuge is important to ensure insect populations do not become resistant to the B.t. gene. The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency requires a separate “structured” refuge be planted in or near the field containing the B.t. crop for most B.t. products, including the current 5 percent structured refuge requirements for Genuity SmartStax and Genuity Double PRO in the Corn Belt. This requires purchasing and planting seeds from separate bags.

For farmers in the U.S. Corn Belt, a RIB option would include simplification in crop planning, inventories and seed handling; flexibility with planting; and ultimately increased compliance with the refuge requirements.

RIB Complete for Genuity SmartStax would provide an IRM strategy for above- and belowground insect management that is delivered to the field in a single-bag refuge solution. Each Genuity SmartStax RIB Complete bag would contain both B.t. and refuge seed and farmers would no longer need to plant a separate refuge for above- or below-ground pests in the Corn Belt. The Genuity SmartStax RIB product concept utilizes the same multiple modes of action for broad-spectrum insect control as Genuity SmartStax corn, which was launched this season and enabled farmers across the Corn Belt to reduce their structured refuge from 20 percent to 5 percent.

Commercialization of 5 percent RIB Complete option for Genuity VT Double PRO would provide growers a choice of using a single-bag option where corn rootworm control technology is not desired by the grower. If registered by EPA, Genuity VT Double PRO would be the first dual mode of action product for above-ground insect-protection with a convenient 5 percent single bag refuge solution. “Our RIB trials are generating a lot of interest from farmers and seed dealers,” Craig said. “We’ve answered a lot of questions about our RIB concepts and look forward to more technical discussions at the Technology Showcases this summer.”

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