GENET archive

[Index][Thread]

BUSINESS & TECHNOLOGY: Monsanto says corn rootworm Bt resistance not spreading



                                  PART 1


------------------------------- GENET-news -------------------------------

TITLE:   MONSANTO SAYS CORN ROOTWORM RESISTANCE NOT SPREADING

SOURCE:  Thomson Reuters, USA

AUTHOR:  Carey Gillam

URL:     http://www.reuters.com/article/2011/09/08/monsanto-corn-idUSN1E7870O720110908

DATE:    08.09.2011

SUMMARY: "Monsanto Co. is working with a ?handful? of farmers to rein in problems with corn pests that appear to be growing resistant to the company?s popular corn seed product that is genetically engineered to protect against insect damage. Recent news reports of resistance problems in top corn-producing states of Iowa and Illinois have fueled investor concerns. The company is already struggling to address weed resistance problems related to its herbicide-tolerant genetically altered crops. But Brett Begemann, Monsanto executive vice president, said Thursday that the corn rootworm resistance problems were ?small? and ?unique.?"

----- archive: http://www.genet-info.org/information-services.html -----


MONSANTO SAYS CORN ROOTWORM RESISTANCE NOT SPREADING

- Says working with farmers on solutions

- Calls situation ?unique? and ?small?

- Says not new, been monitoring for years

KANSAS CITY, Mo., Sept 8 (Reuters) - Monsanto Co. is working with a ?handful? of farmers to rein in problems with corn pests that appear to be growing resistant to the company?s popular corn seed product that is genetically engineered to protect against insect damage.

Recent news reports of resistance problems in top corn-producing states of Iowa and Illinois have fueled investor concerns. The company is already struggling to address weed resistance problems related to its herbicide-tolerant genetically altered crops.

But Brett Begemann, Monsanto executive vice president, said Thursday that the corn rootworm resistance problems were ?small? and ?unique.?

?This is not a new situation,? Begemann said in an address to the UBS investor conference. ?Our rootworm product has been out there for many years. In a handful of situations, I mean a handful - around 100 farmers a year -  they find themselves where they?ve been growing corn on corn... in the hot spot areas of rootworm in northeast Iowa and northern Illinois where the product simply gets overwhelmed by the pressure of the insects in the fields.?

The corn in question is Monsanto?s ?Bt? corn, which has been genetically engineered to contain an insect-killing protein.

Researchers at both Iowa State University and the University of Illinois have been researching the problem amid farmer complaints.

Begemann said Monsanto was working with farmers and suggesting that farmers limit pest problems by rotating corn and soybean crops rather than growing corn year after year as more farmers have been doing as corn prices surge. Pesticides can also help, and Begemann said the company?s new multi-gene ?Smartstax? corn seed should also help fight back pest resistance.

?We have been watching it. It?s not spreading. It?s not getting bigger,? Begemann said.

(Reporting by Carey Gillam; editing by Sofina Mirza-Reid)



                                  PART 2

------------------------------- GENET-news -------------------------------

TITLE:   MONSANTO RESPONDS TO REPORTS OF RESISTANT PESTS

SOURCE:  Minnesota Public Radio, USA

AUTHOR:  Mark Steil

URL:     http://minnesota.publicradio.org/display/web/2011/09/08/monsanto-responds-to-reports-of-resistant-pests/

DATE:    08.09.2011

SUMMARY: "At a conference in London today, Brett Begemann, Monsanto?s executive vice president and chief commercial officer, said problems with corn rootworm have occurred in areas where the corn pest simply overwhelms the plant?s genetically engineered defenses. He said about 100 farmers a year have been reporting rootworm crop damage. ?We?ve been following it for a number of years and watching it,? Begemann said. ?Do we take it serious? You bet we do. We?ve been working with every one of those farmers every year that we?ve been identifying that and they?ve been coming to us and working with us.?"

----- archive: http://www.genet-info.org/information-services.html -----


MONSANTO RESPONDS TO REPORTS OF RESISTANT PESTS

St. Paul, Minn. ? A Monsanto official is downplaying reports that corn pests are becoming resistant to the company?s genetically modified corn varieties.

Federal regulators are studying reports that the corn rootworm may have outsmarted varieties produced by Monsanto, the nation?s leading seller of genetically modified corn seed.

The plant is designed to kill the bug, but in several Midwest states, including Minnesota, it looks like the corn is losing its effectiveness.

At a conference in London today, Brett Begemann, Monsanto?s executive vice president and chief commercial officer, said problems with corn rootworm have occurred in areas where the corn pest simply overwhelms the plant?s genetically engineered defenses. He said about 100 farmers a year have been reporting rootworm crop damage.

?We?ve been following it for a number of years and watching it,? Begemann said. ?Do we take it serious? You bet we do. We?ve been working with every one of those farmers every year that we?ve been identifying that and they?ve been coming to us and working with us.?

Iowa State University researchers say they?ve found resistant rootworms in Iowa. Although Monsanto officials are studying the report, they have not said whether the company accepts the Iowa findings.

Problem fields have also been reported in Minnesota, although researchers have not yet confirmed resistance.

Bill Freese, a science policy analyst for the Center for Food Safety said rootworm resistance may be growing faster than the company acknowledges.

?In one, two, three years down the line it could spread quite rapidly,? said Freese, a frequent critic of genetically modified crops.

A decade ago, Monsanto downplayed the emergence of herbicide resistant weeds until they became a major headache, Freese said.

Many farmers consider the worm-like larvae of the corn rootworm beetle corn?s number one enemy. In a state like Minnesota, with a roughly $7 billion corn crop, the rootworm commands attention.



                                  PART 3

------------------------------- GENET-news -------------------------------

TITLE:   MONSANTO, SYNGENTA DIVE ON MODIFIED CROP ISSUES

SOURCE:  Investor?s Business Daily, USA

AUTHOR:  Alan R. Elliott

URL:     http://www.investors.com/NewsAndAnalysis/Article/583881/201109061754/Parasites-EU-Court-Drag-On-Monsanto.htm

DATE:    06.09.2011

SUMMARY: "Seed strain developer Monsanto took a double kicking Tuesday, as a European court ruling and news reports of corn parasites hit the company?s genetically modified seed strains. Monsanto dropped 5% Friday after reports said corn rootworm parasites may have developed a resistance to Monsanto?s YieldGard brand seeds, which were designed to ward off the parasite. Then the stock gapped down 4% early Tuesday, after an EU court ruled honey even with traces of pollen needs special authorization before it can be sold."

----- archive: http://www.genet-info.org/information-services.html -----


MONSANTO, SYNGENTA DIVE ON MODIFIED CROP ISSUES

Seed strain developer Monsanto took a double kicking Tuesday, as a European court ruling and news reports of corn parasites hit the company?s genetically modified seed strains.

Monsanto dropped 5% Friday after reports said corn rootworm parasites may have developed a resistance to Monsanto?s YieldGard brand seeds, which were designed to ward off the parasite. Then the stock gapped down 4% early Tuesday, after an EU court ruled honey even with traces of pollen needs special authorization before it can be sold.

Monsanto shares recovered to a 1% loss Tuesday.

The parasite story began with an Iowa State University paper, released July 29, confirming farmers in northeast Iowa had seen western corn rootworm (WCR) infestations in crops genetically modified to resist the pest. Fifteen farms in Minnesota reported similar problems.

The Iowa State report was picked up by news agencies beginning Aug. 17, and expanded in stories last week.

Kurt Lawton, crops technology editor with Telvent DTN, says the problem is nowhere near a scale that could affect corn prices.

?It?s extremely limited right now,? he said, ?and the whole issue is being blown out of proportion.?

The Iowa State University study did find resistance to Monsanto seeds. But researcher Aaron Gassman also found the farmers in those situations had consistently bypassed guidelines that help prevent the insect from devising a resistance.

Lawton said the issue was less about insect resistance than about the need for better stewardship among farmers using the modified crops.

The ISU report so far limited the damage to crops grown using Monsanto seeds. Rival Syngenta (SYT), which owns the rootworm-resistant AgriSure brand, slipped only a fraction Friday but toppled 6% Tuesday.

Dow Chemical markets the rootworm-resistant brand Herculex. It dropped 2% Tuesday after a 3% fall on Friday.

The three companies are in different but related industry groups: agricultural operations, agricultural chemicals and basic chemicals.



                                  PART 4

------------------------------- GENET-news -------------------------------

TITLE:   FMC PROVIDES ANSWERS TO CORN ROOTWORM ISSUES

SOURCE:  Corn and Soybean Digest, USA

AUTHOR:  

URL:     http://cornandsoybeandigest.com/fmc-provides-answers-corn-rootworm-issues

DATE:    07.09.2011

SUMMARY: "Growers in Iowa and Illinois are experiencing hardship with damaged Bt hybrid corn crops destroyed by corn rootworm. With proven results and convenient applications, Capture LFR insecticide by FMC Corporation works to combat this issue directly. ?Currently, more fields are having resistance issues with rootworm in Bt corn,? FMC Senior Technical Sales Lead Joe Reed said. ?Growers must use an insecticide to protect that technology. One way growers can do that is by using Capture LFR.?"

----- archive: http://www.genet-info.org/information-services.html -----


FMC PROVIDES ANSWERS TO CORN ROOTWORM ISSUES

Philadelphia ? Growers in Iowa and Illinois are experiencing hardship with damaged Bt hybrid corn crops destroyed by corn rootworm. With proven results and convenient applications, Capture® LFR® insecticide by FMC Corporation works to combat this issue directly.

?Currently, more fields are having resistance issues with rootworm in Bt corn,? FMC Senior Technical Sales Lead Joe Reed said. ?Growers must use an insecticide to protect that technology. One way growers can do that is by using Capture LFR.?

With advanced soil insect control, Capture LFR is specially formulated to directly mix with liquid fertilizers and water. In addition to corn rootworms, Capture LFR insecticide provides a complete zone of protection that controls cutworms, wireworms, grubs and other seed and seedling pests. With appropriate application raete, corn rootworm can be controlled.

?With seed corn prices going up, that seed is going to be more valuable. Along with high commodity prices, the threshold for loss of stand is even lower than it has been in the past,? said Reed. Capture LFR saves a grower time and money while helping to boost and protect yields.

Five years of field data averaged an 11.3 bushels per acre increase when using Capture LFR insecticide. In an Iowa corn rootworm trial featuring Capture LFR, the average bushel per acre harvested was 171. Untreated, the same fields averaged 162 Bu/A.

?You don?t need a severe pest outbreak to use products to increase your yield,? said Adam Prestegord, FMC product manager. ?Plant health begins as soon as you open the bag of seed.?

With stacked seeds showing resistance to corn rootworm, other crop pest management techniques should be focused on. Growers should look to rotating crops between corn and soybeans, which can help to combat pests. Beginning with clean fields is also necessary to increase results and decrease the chance of pests.

By troubleshooting yield limiting factors throughout the season, growers will optimize their yields, increasing returns and overall revenue. For more information on FMC crop protection products, please visit www.FMCcrop.com.