Extreme Weather Hits Syngenta Sales

Syngenta said crop protection and seed sales fell in the first half of the year, hurt by floods in North America and drought in Australia.

Syngenta reported Crop Protection sales fell 6% to $5.2 billion from $5.5 billion, and were flat against 2018 at constant exchange rates (CER) in the first half of 2019. Seeds sales fell 9% to $1.6 billion from $1.8 billion, and were down 3% on a currency adjusted basis.

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CEO Eric Fyrwald said, “The first half of this year saw many challenges for agriculture, including historic flooding in the US that resulted in significantly late planting and severe droughts in Australia and Indonesia. Growers continue to face challenges with trade issues. Sales for the first half of 2019 were 1% lower at constant exchange rates than in 20182. Adverse weather conditions were mostly offset by strong volume growth in Latin America.

“We remain committed to focusing our innovation on helping growers deal with the impacts of climate change, including changing weather patterns and increasing pest pressure. New product introductions in the first half included fungicide seed treatment, VAYANTIS, for the control of Pythium and Phytophthora diseases with first registrations expected in the US and Canada in 2020, and the registration of TAVIUM PLUS VAPORGRIP TECHNOLOGY herbicide in the US and Canada. Syngenta is working with local teams to quickly respond to increasing Fall Armyworm infestation in Asia by providing advice and integrated pest management solutions, including FORTENZA DUO, BT traits and biologicals.”

Sales in Europe, Africa and the Middle East were 1% lower at constant exchange rates (CER) compared with H1 2018 despite a challenging market environment. A strong early season in the North with increased cereals demand in crop protection gave way to weakness in the second quarter.

In North America, sales were down 14% CER, impacted by extreme weather conditions. The first half saw two new product introductions: TAVIUM PLUS VAPORGRIP TECHNOLOGY herbicide for use in soybeans and cotton, and VAYANTIS for Pythium and Phytophthora control in a variety of crops.

In Latin America, overall momentum from 2018 was maintained with strong volume growth in Crop Protection partially offset by the impact of weaker currency. Sales in H1 2019 were 28% higher (CER) than in 2018.

In Asia Pacific, sales were down by 5% (CER), driven by drought in Australia and Indonesia and difficult market conditions in Vietnam.

China experienced continued momentum with Crop Protection sales increasing by 11% (CER) compared to H1 2018 assisted by successful in-licensing.