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Improved capabilities lead to better soybean technologies at Bayer

Bayer is poised to turn high-tech into high yield potential for soybean growers.

Industry Voice by Bayer

December 15, 2020

3 Min Read

New tools are transforming the way Bayer researchers develop new soybean products. Laura Grapes, who leads Product Systems in the Bayer North America Breeding program, talks about the company’s breeding advancements and what they mean for the Bayer soybean pipeline.


How is Bayer transforming soybean breeding?

We are using some incredibly high-tech, emerging technologies that are helping us to better develop and predict soybean performance for our customers. New tools like advanced analytics, imaging platforms, and artificial intelligence are changing the way our researchers gather and make sense of data and develop new products, and they are enabling us to bring new and better products to the farm gate faster. Advanced technologies also are allowing us to significantly modernize and expand our testing program so we can deliver products that are field-proven for each grower’s unique on-farm conditions.

How is Bayer poised to deliver innovation to farmers faster?

The Bayer breeding advancements are driving yield improvements in soybeans faster and higher than ever before. But yield is about more than just the seed. It is everything that happens to that seed and selecting the right seed for a farmer’s specific conditions. It is how we combine seeds, traits and chemistry and digital solutions to improve the whole-farm experience. Thus, we are re-imagining the way we do research, and we are thinking about comprehensive tailored solutions for growers where genetics are just one part. We are adapting new technologies, such as UAVs and digital imaging that capture crop performance and stressors across an entire field. The data we gather from these and other technologies goes into our digital platform, where our models and algorithms use that data to inform prescriptive recommendations that help our customers get the returns they need from every acre.

What new technologies are coming from Bayer?

We continue to invest in developing new agronomic traits, including yield-enhancement, stress tolerance, pest resistance, and plant growth and development. Our plant health team has expanded testing and evaluation of key soy diseases, as well as monitoring for emerging disease issues. In terms of herbicide-tolerance, we will be launching XtendFlex® soybeans on a potential of 20 million acres in 2021. We also are developing 4th and 5th generation herbicide-tolerance traits. Built on the proven performance of Roundup Ready 2 Xtend® soybeans, these new traits will provide additional herbicide tolerances to offer growers more flexibility and enable exceptional weed control. On the crop protection front, some new technologies include Roundup PowerMAX® 3 herbicide, launched this year, and new Delaro® Complete fungicide, which is showing a positive yield response in 91 percent of soybean trials (data from 65 separate trials) conducted across the Midwest in 2019. Delaro® Complete promotes healthy, dark green leaves for improved photosynthesis and increases grain fill and plant stress resistance to utilize the full genetic potential and yield of seed. Additionally, a little bit further into the future, we have exciting news with a new herbicide in development – the first new post-emergence mode of action for broad-acre weed control in 30 years.



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