Genuity® Roundup Ready 2 Yield® soybeans outyield competitive products for fourth consecutive year, solidifying status as industry leading platform and setting stage for growth
Final harvest data for the 2012 U.S. growing season confirms Monsanto Company (NYSE: MON) corn and soybean products maintained a significant yield advantage compared to competitors, despite one of the most difficult growing seasons on record, Chief Technology Officer Robb Fraley, Ph.D., told investors today at Citi's 5th Annual Basic Materials Symposium in New York. Highlighting the expansion and integration of the company's research and development platforms, Fraley noted Monsanto is uniquely positioned to deliver the best total yield package for farmers.
Fraley presented final 2012 harvest results, highlighting updated yield data for the company's corn platform, Genuity® Roundup Ready 2 Yield® soybean performance data and new results from its Integrated Farming Systems™ on-farm research.
"Monsanto is committed to developing innovative, sustainable agriculture products that deliver outstanding yield," Fraley said. "This season's strong results, even against the backdrop of the devastating drought we witnessed throughout the country, reinforce our ability to deliver on our commitments to our farmer customers, and we look forward to providing an even stronger toolkit of solutions in the future."
Soybean Platform Delivers Greater Yield, Sets Stage for Next Wave of Soybean Advancements
In its fourth year of deployment, Genuity® Roundup Ready 2 Yield® products extended their yield advantage versus competitive first-generation Roundup Ready® soybeans, achieving a more than 4.5 bushels per acre national yield advantage, Fraley said. With their highest yield advantage since commercial introduction, Genuity® Roundup Ready 2 Yield® soybeans demonstrated strong performance in every major growing region, reflecting the broad availability of more than 300 varieties as the company reached critical mass in its portfolio offerings.
The company expects the Genuity® Roundup Ready 2 Yield® platform growth to continue, with another step up in total acres in 2013. Fraley added that the soybean platform is set to deliver more growth in the coming years, including the addition of both Intacta RR2 PRO™ and Roundup Ready® 2 Xtend soybeans, each representing a significant global opportunity.
The Roundup Ready® Xtend Crop System is intended to offer more consistent, flexible control of weeds, especially tough-to-manage and glyphosate-resistant weeds, Fraley noted, adding that the system is on track for Ground Breakers(SM) on-farm field trials under permit next season and introduction to U.S. soybean farmers in 2014, pending regulatory approval.
"Building on the success of the Genuity® Roundup Ready 2 Yield® platform, we're preparing to enter the next phase of innovation in soybeans," Fraley said. "Through the combination of an expanding stacked-trait platform, the acceleration of breeding improvements and the addition of improved agronomic practices, this is the deepest soybean pipeline I've seen in my career and one that will continue to deliver additional value to farmers."
Corn Products Maintain Long-Standing Yield Advantage
Fraley also highlighted final corn harvest data for the 2012 growing season, which reinforces Monsanto's long-standing yield advantage. In 2012, DEKALB® germplasm maintained its historical advantage relative to competitive products, outperforming all competitors with an average 8.3 bushels per acre yield advantage.
DroughtGard™ Hybrids also demonstrated strong performance in 2012 trials this season, with commercially projected products showing a yield advantage of more than 5 bushels per acre over competitor hybrids in the Western Great Plains, Fraley said.
Integrated Farming Systems Boosts Yield Opportunity
Fraley also cited the company's progress in its newest technology platforms, including Integrated Farming Systems™. Fraley noted that Monsanto's Integrated Farming Systems™ platform utilizes the company's unique understanding of hybrid and variety performance to develop planting prescriptions that can help maximize the yield potential in every seed. FieldScripts(SM), which will provide a variable rate seeding prescription and a recommendation for the best corn hybrid to use in a farmer's field, will be the first commercial product from the Integrated Farming Systems™ platform, Fraley added.
"We have seen consistent yield gains when farmers use FieldScripts(SM)," Fraley said. "In fact, farmers who tested FieldScripts(SM) this season achieved an additional 5-10 bushels per acre advantage. This is exciting technology and one I believe has the opportunity to significantly increase yields."
The company will conduct Ground Breakers(SM) on-farm testing next season for FieldScripts(SM), Fraley explained. The company is planning a limited launch of FieldScripts(SM) in the key states of Illinois, Indiana, Iowa and Minnesota for the 2014 season.
Fraley's presentation will be webcast at 12:45 p.m. central time today. Presentation slides and a simultaneous audio webcast of the conference call may be accessed by visiting www.monsanto.com/investors. Visitors may need to download Windows Media Player™ prior to listening to the webcast. Following the live broadcast, a replay of the webcast will be available on the Monsanto website for three weeks.