December 17, 2013

Bayer CropScience to launch three new rapeseed varieties in 2014



Three new rapeseed varieties are line up in Bayer CropScience for 2014, as learnt by growers attending the recent Northern Ag Expo in Fargo, North Dakota, USA.


These three varieties will each offer new traits that will help overcome some of the challenges of growing rapeseeds, according to Kyle Rollness, Bayer CropScience field sales rep.


All three of the new InVigor varieties being offered have the LibertyLink trait, which gives growers an alternative to the glyphosate-resistant systems.


"Having that LibertyLink trait, from an agronomic standpoint, gives you a chance to rotate chemistries on your farm," Rollness said. "The way things are going, farmers are using glyphosate for growing corn and soy; they are using it for a burn down on wheat and sugar beets. And it's a good product, but the utility of it isn't going to last forever if we continue to use it at the rate we are now. So breaking that cycle and getting a different mode of action in there is important."


The new variety L252 is the first InVigor hybrid offering high-oil content. This is a mid-season variety with high yield potential.


Another new rapeseed hybrid is L140P. The P at the end of the variety number stands for pod shatter. Basically that trait keeps the pod intact, so growers can either delay swathing until a later time, or it can allow the straight harvesting of rapeseed. The tolerance to pod shatter also reduces the impact of late-season moisture and wind events that can split pods and shell seeds before harvest.


The last new hybrid, L160S has built in tolerance to Sclerotinia stem rot. Sclerotinia is one of the most serious and common diseases of rapeseed, especially along the top tier of counties in North Dakota. By planting L160S, growers may be able to delay or even avoid a fungicide application, according to Rollness.


The fact that it's a full season variety also makes it ideal for growing in the northern production areas, he noted.


Rollness said the current market situation should cause growers who haven't been raising rapeseed in the past to take another look at including rapeseed in their rotations.


The latest discussion by the Food and Drug Administration on the harmful impact of trans fats in the human diet might also end up being a positive factor for rapeseed production, since canola oil has zero trans fats.


The trend this year for more winter wheat acres should also be an incentive for more rapeseed acres, since winter wheat and rapeseed are good companion crops, according to Rollness.


As with any new varieties being introduced, the seed supplies for all three varieties are somewhat reduced for the 2014 growing season but increasing production for 2015, he noted.

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