Triple-herbicide-tolerant soybean set for limited 2021 release

Bayer's XtendFlex soybeans pick up needed approvals

At the company’s Chatham, Ont. research farm, Bayer agronomic systems manager Adam Pfeffer shows a plot of XtendFlex herbicide-tolerant soybeans, comparing an untreated check strip infested with redroot pigweed against a herbicide-treated strip. (Bayer Crop Science video screengrab via YouTube)

Bayer Crop Science expects to have “a small volume” of its new XtendFlex soybeans in the Canadian seed market for the 2021 growing season.

XtendFlex soybeans, whose trait package is stacked with herbicide tolerance for glyphosate and dicamba as well as glufosinate, will be available in Canada for planting this spring, but not in all soy-growing areas, the company said Tuesday.

The XtendFlex varieties to be made available this spring in Canada are around Group 2.0, Andrew Chisholm, Bayer’s trait and trait launch manager for Canada, said via email Friday.

Group numbers denote the autumn date ranges in which a soy variety is expected to reach maturity; the higher the number, the later the date range. Group 2.0, Chisholm said, keeps the available varieties “mainly in Ontario and some of Quebec.”

XtendFlex seed was produced under stewardship last year, he said, so volumes were very small.

This season, he said, “is more about initial experiences and awareness to set up expansion in 2022.”

The new varieties are the latest entrants in Bayer’s Roundup Ready Xtend Crop System, which until now has sported double-stacked tolerance for glyphosate and dicamba. XtendFlex is billed as the industry’s first soy trait to include the triple tolerance.

Thus, Chisholm said, the new stack “ensures that each grower can use the modes of action they need to effectively address their specific weed control issues.”

The trait package allows growers to “focus both on early weed control to maximize yield potential as well as the ability to clean up flushing weeds,” Bayer said in a release Tuesday.

“With greater flexibility in both the pre-emergence and post-emergence stages, growers can adopt different modes of action to manage difficult-to-control weeds such as waterhemp and Canada fleabane.”

It also allows growers to follow “proper” strategies to manage herbicide-resistant weed populations in their crops, Chisholm said, “including the use of multiple effective modes of action throughout the season.”

XtendFlex soybeans in September 2020 picked up their final key authorization overseas, allowing their export to the European Union for food, feed and processing.

With that approval in hand, Chisholm said, Bayer is “now able to expand the number of varieties and volume available for future growing seasons.”

For the U.S. market, meanwhile, Bayer said in September it expected to be “in a strong position to supply 20 million U.S. soy acres when the selling season arrives.” — Glacier FarmMedia Network

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Editor, Daily News

Dave Bedard

Editor, Daily News, Glacier FarmMedia Network. A Saskatchewan transplant in Winnipeg.



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