Monsanto, Novozymes Unveil Big Plans for New Corn Inoculant

"We believe it could be applied to more than 90 million acres by 2025 and become one of the biggest biological products in the ag industry.” --Colin Bletsky, Novozymes

“We believe it could be applied to more than 90 million acres by 2025 and become one of the biggest biological products in the ag industry.” –Colin Bletsky, Novozymes

As part of their commitment to develop and commercialize innovative microbial solutions for farmers through The BioAg Alliance, Monsanto Company and Novozymes unveiled their newest product, the corn inoculant Acceleron B-300 SAT.

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Derived from a fungus found in soil, Acceleron B-300 SAT showed a two-year average yield advantage of more than 3 bushels per acre. The Acceleron B-300 SAT inoculant will be applied to all of Monsanto’s new 2017 corn hybrids sold in the United States.

“Harnessing the power of nature’s microbes, farmers will be able to produce more crops while using fertilizer more efficiently and producing less CO2. This will benefit agriculture, consumers and the environment,” said Colin Bletsky, Novozymes’ Vice President for BioAg. “This is the first product jointly developed by Monsanto and Novozymes, and it shows the kind of innovation we can achieve in The BioAg Alliance. We believe it could be applied to more than 90 million acres by 2025 and become one of the biggest biological products in the ag industry.”

Farmers use seed coatings to protect their crops from yield-robbing threats, to improve plant health, and to increase nutrient availability. Acceleron B-300 SAT increases plants’ ability to take up nutrients and is an improved formulation of the JumpStart inoculant (Penicillium bilaiae), a product that existed in Novozymes’ pipeline before the formation of The BioAg Alliance.

The spores in previous versions of JumpStart last about 120 days on the seed after application. This means that farmers using JumpStart inoculants must treat their seeds within a short time before planting. With Acceleron B-300 SAT inoculant, scientists from Monsanto and Novozymes have developed a formulation that, when seed is stored in proper conditions, is viable for at least two years on the seed and is generally compatible with other seed coating chemistries. This allows Monsanto to coat the seeds with the microbial product before the seeds are shipped to retailers and farmers. Acceleron B-300 SAT inoculant is the first ‘upstream’ corn inoculant ever developed.

“Seed applied products – whether microbial or chemistry-based – can and should work together to help growers protect their seed investment and get more out of every acre,” said Juan Ferreira, Global Vice President of Monsanto’s Vegetable Seeds, Seed Applied Solutions and Crop Protection businesses. “Combining the fermentation and formulation expertise of Novozymes’ scientists – along with the innovative approach to seed coating and field-testing capabilities of the Monsanto team – produced a product that will give growers more flexibility in their application decisions and can ultimately result in higher yield.”

The Acceleron B-300 SAT inoculant will be added to Monsanto’s Seed Applied Solutions portfolio. In addition to applying the product to its DEKALB, Channel and regional brands’ new 2017 corn hybrids, Monsanto said it will offer the product to its licensees and distributors.