by Eric Sfiligoj

Before attending for the evening to find out which global ag retailers had been named to the honor of Ambassadors of Respect, 2017 Environmental Respect winners discovered more information about their host’s, DuPont Crop Protection, efforts in the agricultural market. This included a morning-long stop at Chesapeake Farms in Chestertown, MD. On this 3,300-acre plot of land, DuPont regularly grows all manner of crops including soybeans and corn, along with dozens of test plots for proposed new offerings from the company’s Pioneer seed division. The company also tests many new crop protection products and precision agricultural methods as well.

At this stop, Environmental Respect winners learned more about several DuPont products including Plenish soybeans, which contain a higher oil content than traditional varieties, Zorvec fungicide for the fruit and vegetable markets, and a display reviewing the history/development of corn from the crop’s early days in Mexico to today’s multi-hybrid options.

In particular, the company highlighted two different products for attendees. One of these was Lumisena Fungicide Seed Treatment. According to DuPont Crop Protection’s Ron Sabatka, Lumisena can help soybean and sunflower growers combat two particularly nasty diseases – Phytophthora and downy mildew. “For these markets, Lumisena represents the first new active ingredient option in almost 40 years,” said Sabatka. “In field trials we’ve done, seeds treated with Lumisena showed 32% less incidence of Phytophthora sojae than untreated seeds.” At this point, he added, DuPont Crop Protection is waiting for Lumisena to receive final approval for market use.

The other new product talked about at Chesapeake Farms was FeXapan herbicide plus VaporGrip Technology. Part of the new host of products supporting the launch of dicamba-resistant crops, DuPont’s Jonathan Clark told attendees that FeXapan offers an important solution for those growers currently struggling with herbicide-resistant weeds such as mare’s tail in their fields. “Many growers don’t have the tools to control these weeds anymore,” said Clark. “We believe FeXapan gives them a new option to do so.”