The National Corn Growers Association has launched an online campaign reminding growers of the importance of properly channeling grain this harvest. Through a series of online placements on AgWeb.com, email blasts and text message alerts, the association will focus farmer attention during this critical harvest period, running from mid-September through early November.
“NCGA’s Trade Policy and Biotechnology Action Team always stresses the importance of balancing access to technology and export markets,” explained team chair Jim Zimmerman, who farmers near Rosendale, Wis. “The Know Before You Grow online tool plays an important role in this by empowering growers with the knowledge that they need to make educated decisions. With a potentially record crop on the way, it is more important than ever that we all work together to grow markets and maintain access to the products that allow us to provide such an abundance.”
Know Before You Grow stems from NCGA’s firm commitment to the principle that U.S.-grown biotech hybrids not intended for some export markets should not be placed into export channels. While the need to maintain export markets remains of great importance to NCGA, it also recognizes the potential difficulty farmers would face if a regulatory system that is not functioning overseas could bar farmers’ access to necessary technology indefinitely.
NCGA developed this campaign to highlight the importance of proper stewardship of corn, particularly that planted as part of the Right to Grow system for limited release of Duracade.
The Right to Grow system tightly controlled the sale of seed corn produced using Duracade technology in a vigorous attempt to keep it out of export channels and limited the amount of Duracade released to ensure corn grown could effectively be managed by the trait provider. Through a marketing agreement signed with Gavilon, Right to Grow provides a specified marketing channel for all corn grown with Duracade technology and acts as another line of assurance farmers will be able to steward their grain into proper channels.
NCGA urges growers to double recheck any seed plots on farms or contracted with a third party to verify that they know what precisely has been planted and ensure sensitive varieties are properly stewarded into appropriate channels. NCGA also offers a full listing of commercial hybrids containing the Duracade trait on its Know Before You Grow online tool.
NCGA worked tirelessly this planting season to provide information regarding the status of import approvals with key markets and a reference on stewardship plans through promotion of its Know Before You Grow web resource.
Growers should always read their grower agreements and communicate with both their seed salespersons and grain buyers. This is why NCGA works with technology providers to publicize regular updates on the approval status of these events. Regardless of export status, there is an ample market for U.S. corn.