To pave the way for their new herbicide programs, Monsanto and Dow AgroSciences will establish separate facilities to showcase the programs in action and to teach the proper way to handle and effectively use herbicides.
Monsanto plans to offer soybeans with a stacked trait tolerant to its Roundup Ready 2 Xtend, which will use glyphosate and dicamba, for the 2014 growing season. Dow AgroSciences plans to offer corn varieties tolerant to its Enlist Duo herbicide, which uses 2,4-D choline and glyphosate, part of its Enlist Weed Control System, ready for the 2014 growing season. By mid-decade, both companies plan to offer the trifecta of cotton, corn and soybean tolerant to the respective programs, reformulated chemistries for each.
Announced at the 2013 Commodity Classic in Kissimmee, Fla., Monsanto's Learning Xperience and Dow's Technical Centers will show the herbicide programs in action this summer and will concentrate on "teaching the teachers" -- the retailers, distributors and seed resellers. Farmers are welcome to get a peek at the systems in action, too.
Introduction for both programs focuses on the Midwest and moves to the South.
Monsanto's Learning Xperience is "a concept and understanding of how folks can effectively manage weeds today, thinking about the traits and genetics within that soybean system, and cotton as well, and going into that next evolution as dicamba becomes an additional options within that system," said Michelle Vigna, Monsanto's lead on dicamba.
Dow's Technical Centers provide a way to see and understand how the new 2,4-D choline and glyphosate trait works and to spotlight weed-resistance management education and the use of more than one mode of action in fighting weeds, particularly in the Midwest "where there is still a lot of that education that needs to happen," said Damon Palmer, U.S. leader on the Enlist Weed Control System.
Both the Dow and Monsanto leads say herbicide-resistant weeds continue to be a growing concern across the country's farming belt. New modes of action to fight them are not available. Combating weeds resistance to herbicides is the focus of the new facilities and a way to spotlight what is available now in the fight against them.
Dow's five technology centers will be in Memphis, Tenn.; Indiana; Lamberton, Minn.; Des Moines and Kansas City.
Monsanto's 19 Learning Xperience centers are slated for Fargo, N.D., and spread throughout the Midwest down to south Georgia.