Syngenta exits canola seed business


Canola growers checking out Syngenta Canada’s 2018 seed guide for Western Canada will notice canola by its absence.

Syngenta, which entered the Prairie canola seed market in 2013 and by this spring had six hybrid varieties on offer, said in a statement it has “recently taken the decision to exit the canola seed business.”

The company, which is in the midst of finalizing its friendly takeover by Beijing-based chemical firm ChemChina, said it is “no longer selling or promoting our canola hybrids.”

The Canadian arm of the Swiss ag chem and seed company said it will “continue to support our existing canola seed portfolio through 2017 seeding and our programs and in-field product support, as per their terms and conditions.”

Asked via email why the company opted to leave canola seed behind, Syngenta said in its statement that it “regularly evaluate(s) all aspects of our business” and the decision was made “as part of these activities.”

Syngenta, whose canola portfolio before 2013 was strictly in crop protection products, this spring offered an early to mid-season clubroot-resistant variety, SY4105; two early mid-season hybrids, SY4114 and SY4135; a mid-season hybrid, SY4166; a mid- to long-season hybrid, SY4157; and a new clubroot-resistant hybrid, SY4187.

“This is an exceptional time to be in the canola seed market, given the extent of breeding and varietal development activities going on across the country,” crop consultant Dave Sippell, who at the time was Syngenta’s head of diverse field crops for North America, said in launching the canola line in 2012.

“Based on grower and market needs, Syngenta will continue to increase its number of canola seed offerings over the coming years,” the company said at the time.

For 2018, Syngenta’s seed catalog for Prairie growers includes six wheat varieties, a two-row malting barley variety and seven soybean varieties. Its seed offerings in Eastern Canada include nine conventional and 18 Genuity Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybean varieties, and 19 corn hybrids. — Network

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