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Dow, Monsanto Cross-License Corn Trait Tech

Agreements enable next-generation SmartStax corn with access to Enlist herbicide-tolerant corn trait

Published on: Apr 11, 2013

Monsanto and Dow AgroSciences Thursday announced both companies have reached new cross-licensing agreements for weed control in corn; Monsanto will license Dow AgroSciences' Enlist Weed Control System herbicide-tolerant trait for use in field corn while Dow AgroSciences will license Monsanto's Corn Rootworm III.

The agreement paves the way for introduction (pending regulatory approvals) of next-generation products that build off the current SmartStax platform, which includes Dow's Herculex and Monsanto's insect resistance and herbicide-tolerance traits. Financial terms of the agreement were not disclosed.

These technologies are expected to be introduced in each company's respective proprietary germplasm and sold competitively by both companies as next-generation weed and insect control products. The agreements build on the competitive standard set by SmartStax for stacked-trait corn offerings.

Agreements enable next-generation SmartStax corn with access to Enlist herbicide-tolerant corn trait
Agreements enable next-generation SmartStax corn with access to Enlist herbicide-tolerant corn trait

This creates the opportunity to bring together for the first time three different modes of action for below-ground insect control in a corn product.

Stacked trait products are particularly valuable for combating pest resistance and preserving trait durability. Weed resistance is also a challenge facing agriculture, and Enlist is a system that combines traits providing tolerance to 2,4-D and FOPs, novel herbicides and stewardship, offering two modes of action for weed control. Monsanto is the first licensee of the Enlist trait in corn.

Under the agreements:

•Monsanto and Dow AgroSciences will license to each other, under royalty-bearing agreements, traits for weed control as well as insect protection in corn. Specifically: Dow AgroSciences will license to Monsanto its proprietary Enlist corn herbicide-tolerant trait on a non-exclusive basis; Monsanto will license to Dow its third generation corn rootworm technology, Corn Rootworm III, on a non-exclusive basis.

•The agreement paves the way for U.S. introduction (pending regulatory approvals) of new, next-generation SmartStax products by the end of the decade.

•Monsanto will represent both parties for joint third-party licensing of the next-generation SmartStax corn to third-party seed companies through its Corn States business, allowing farmers access to cutting edge technology in the brands they prefer.

•Dow AgroSciences will out-license the rights to the Enlist trait technology. 

•Both parties will retain the right to independently stack additional trait technologies.