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Patented seed technology to reduce costs, increase quality


DuPont’s new patented Seed Production Technology will reduce the cost of the mechanical and labor-intensive process for creating its high-yielding hybrid seed corn by more than 20 percent in the field, while simultaneously increasing product quality, the company said in a release yesterday.

The proprietary system, which eliminates the need for hand and mechanical means of controlling pollen flow between the two parent lines, is undergoing high-level testing this year.

Beginning next year, DuPont’s business partner, Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc., will pilot Seed Production Technology in production seed fields in North America and plans to have the first seed produced with the system available to farmers in 2011.

Paul Schickler, DuPont’s vice president and general manager and president of Pioneer Hi-Bred, said he expects the technology to be effective across genetics.

“For Pioneer, we won’t have the associated cost of the labor, machinery or fuel,” he said. “Our fields will produce more because they will not be damaged as much as the traditional seed production process. With Seed Production Technology’s capability to strengthen pollen management, we are increasing the quality of the industry-leading products we deliver to customers.”

Schickler said the new seed technology is expected to save the company more than $100 million annually in productivity improvement. Most of the value will come from a 15 to 30 percent boost in field management productivity in seed fields where the technology is used.

Dupont recently shared details of the new technology with Wall Street analysts visiting its plant genetics business and research campus.

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