Farm Industry News

A new breed of corn

A new Bt corn trait named Herculex I can control corn borer, cutworms and armyworms. Dow AgroSciences and Pioneer Hi-Bred International jointly developed Herculex I Insect Protection. Herculex corn hybrids have full U.S. approval for both food and feed use, but approvals are pending in foreign markets. The companies anticipate that Herculex corn will be released for the 2002 growing season, depending on international regulatory approval status, grain stewardship programs and product demand.

Herculex, a trait developed using the Cry1F protein from Bt, is also tolerant to Liberty herbicide.

“The advantages Herculex I brings to growers include enhanced insect protection, handler safety and convenience, and availability in elite corn hybrids,” says Tom Wiltrout, global business leader for corn at Dow AgroSciences.

All growers who use Herculex corn will be required to implement an insect resistance management plan. In the northern Corn Belt, growers will be required to plant a 20% non-Bt refuge within mile of each Herculex field. The refuge may be planted as a separate field, or blocks or strips within a field.

Until Herculex hybrids are approved in other markets, they will be subject to market channeling and export restrictions, including a strict product stewardship program.

Pioneer and Dow are collaborating on research for other insect-resistant traits such as corn rootworm resistance. The corn rootworm trait could be on the market as early as 2003 or 2004. Contact your local Dow or Pioneer sales representative, visit or or circle 194.

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