USDA has deregulated Dow AgroSciences Enlist corn and soybean traits in the United States. The Enlist traits are part of the Enlist Weed Control System, a new trait and herbicide technology that will control herbicide-resistant and tough weeds.
Dow now awaits EPA registration of Enlist Duo herbicide, the companion herbicide to the Enlist traits. Approval for Enlist Duo is expected in the near future.
USDA’s decision applies to the Enlist corn, Enlist soybean and Enlist E3 soybean traits. Enlist E3 soybeans are being developed through a collaboration between MS Technologies and Dow AgroSciences.
Resistant weeds more than doubled since 2009 and infest approximately 70 million acres of American farmland, challenging farmers’ ability to raise a healthy crop. Farmers in areas with the most severe infestations have had to resort to older, less effective farming practices, compromising their yields and ultimately impacting their ability to contribute to the U.S. food supply and export markets.
“Enlist will help farmers increase their productivity to meet the growing demand for a safe and affordable food supply,” said Tim Hassinger, president, Dow AgroSciences. “We’ve used the latest science and technology to address problem weeds. Enlist will be a very effective solution and we’re pleased to have this technology one step closer to the farm gate.”
The American Soybean Association called upon foreign markets where U.S. soybeans are exported “to quickly review and approve these new biotech events so they can be commercialized here in the United States without jeopardizing export markets, and U.S. farmers can realize their benefits.”
“As the problem of weed resistance spreads across the soybean growing regions of the United States, this solution presents another integral mode of action with which farmers can fight yield-robbing weeds,” said ASA president and Iowa farmer Ray Gaesser.
“Tools like Enlist will help me do my job more efficiently and productively,” says Brooks Hurst, a farmer from Tarkio, Mo. “That benefits Americans in two ways. It puts food on our tables and contributes to a healthy economy.”
Commercial intentions for Enlist in 2015 will be provided after the EPA has issued its decision on Enlist Duo herbicide.