Dow Launches New Insect Trait Technology

New for the 2017 season, PowerCore trait technology from Dow AgroSciences gives growers an advanced option to control yield-robbing, above-ground insects in corn. It provides superior, broad-spectrum control by incorporating a pyramid of three different Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) proteins.

PowerCore is the latest addition to the Dow AgroSciences corn insect trait portfolio, which also includes SmartStax trait technology for industry-leading protection of above- and below-ground insects. PowerCore and SmartStax are complementary technologies that give growers a choice so they can place the right trait technology on the right acre for prescriptive protection.

Where corn rootworm is of concern, SmartStax offers the excellent protection they’ve come to trust in the most robust corn insect trait technology on the market. Corn rootworm can be troublesome in fields with corn-on-corn production. Growers in these areas could particularly benefit from the below-ground insect protection in SmartStax. When corn rootworm control is not needed, PowerCore offers superior season-long, above-ground insect control with multiple modes of action.

“We want to provide growers with solutions that help them maximize production, protect yields and increase profitability,” says Jill Zeller, U.S. Seeds marketing leader for Dow AgroSciences. “When growers have choices to plant the technologies best-suited for their farms, they achieve their goals of higher yields and better bottom lines. SmartStax and PowerCore give them a choice between the industry’s most-trusted below- and above-ground technology and best-in-class above-ground insect technology.”

Growers see major benefit
Scott Becker of Manson, Iowa, farms a 50-50 rotation with corn and soybeans. On acres where corn rootworm is not a problem, Becker likes the idea of planting new PowerCore® trait technology. Although he doesn’t need the corn rootworm protection on every acre, he never knows if above-ground insects will be a problem in a given season. Becker got a firsthand look at PowerCore as part of a stewarded launch and was impressed with what he saw.

“I was interested in PowerCore because of my corn-and-beans rotation, and I knew that I didn’t need the below-ground trait across my whole farm,” Becker says. “PowerCore gives us above-ground insect control of a lot of different insects, especially ones that cause us problems like corn borer and corn earworm. With the different modes of action, PowerCore is like an insurance policy so you can sleep at night and not worry about above-ground insects.”

But Becker emphasizes that SmartStax trait technology still plays an important role on his farm and provides protection on acres where corn rootworm is an issue.

“I’ve had really good success with SmartStax trait technology and like the above- and below-ground insect control for corn rootworm. It provides excellent insect protection,” Becker says. “It’s definitely an advantage to growers to get the right technology on the right acres. We can plant SmartStax if we have corn rootworm, or we can go with PowerCore to control fields that only have above-ground insects.”

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