It is with pride that we announce the second annual AgProfessional Editors' Choice 2008 New Product of the Year Awards. The editorial staff of AgProfessional has selected 10 products that captured our attention. We think these innovative products deserve high recognition.

We based the winning selections on the facts and information provided us in news releases, background materials and media presentations. We didn't contact company officials prior to the selections, attempt to gather financials related to the products or evaluate the long-term sales potential of products.

Out of the hundreds of new product and product upgrade announcements that we receive at AgProfessional each year, some of the products stand out as exceptional and as potential industry changing. The new products had to be announced during 2008, not 2007 or prior.

What was most important in the evaluation was the news release information and media packets provided by the companies. The winning companies recognize the potential to impact purchase decisions by providing interesting and stimulating information in various manners. The winning companies issued something other than run-of-the-mill information-materials that showed each company's excitement about introducing a revolutionary product or a major upgrade.

The judging was done by the editorial staff (Richard Keller, editor; Colleen Scherer, managing editor; and Jim Ruen, contributing editor).

The product award winners appeared only on in the new products section, not in AgProfessional magazine. The magazine and Web site are targeted toward crop consultants, farm managers and agricultural retailers. Additional information about the award winners is on the Web site. Web sites are basically unlimited space for providing information, and as noted, we receive hundreds of product news releases each year. allows us to list all products of interest to our agricultural business audiences. (Notice the separate request for Web site voting by readers to select the Readers' Choice 2008 New Product of the Year Award.)

Some of the winning products were introduced early in the year for use in 2008 and others were announced late in the year with sales potential in 2008 and 2009. The majority of product use will occur in 2009 and beyond.

We salute the manufacturers and will proudly present each of the company winners with an award plaque to commemorate them being one of the winners of this award.

A short description of each AgProfessional Editors' Choice 2008 New Product of the Year Award winners is included in alphabetical order by company name.

Vote NOW for top product of the year
Choose your top product introduction of 2008 from AgProfessional's Editors' Choice Top 10. Base your vote on the information provided and your opinion about what makes a new product introduction superior to other new products. The award should not be based on sales already accomplished but potential to positively impact the ag industry.

To see full product descriptions and to vote online, click here.

Results of voting will be in the February issue of AgProfessional when the 2008 Readers' Choice New Product of the Year Award winner will be announced.

AutoFarm, Reflex Technology
Reflex Technology provides continuity of position solution to maintain automated steering by seamlessly "flexing" to a lower accuracy mode when a higher accuracy mode is lost, such as loss of the RTK radio link.

AutoFarm has introduced Reflex Technology, now built into its RTK Steering Systems including A5 RTK AutoSteer and the FarmPRO GPS Steering and Application Control System, said Justin Larouche, AutoFarm director of product management.

Reflex offers multiple signal selection, allowing the operator to jump from RTK to WAAS with blockage, or OmniSTAR to WAAS.

Reflex is constantly running OmniSTAR and WAAS in the background, it "flexes" to whichever provides the best solution when necessary, then automatically returns to the higher accuracy mode as soon as it becomes available.

"What we find is if you get too close to a large area of trees or buildings we might temporarily lose signal. The Reflex technology allows us to 'flex' back to either a WAAS or OmniSTAR system. We might temporarily lose a little bit of accuracy but we have zero downtime as far as assisted steering is concerned," said Dustin Ehler, Ehler Bros. Fertilizer Co., Thomasboro, Ill.

Bayer CropScience, Belt Insecticide
Belt SC insecticide contains a new active ingredient, flubendiamide, from a new chemical class, the phthalic acid diamides, and provides a mode of action that acts differently against target pests compared to conventional materials. In addition to several row crops, including corn, cotton and tobacco, Belt is also registered for use on pome and stone fruits, tree nuts and grapes.

Belt SC insecticide has been registered by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) for control of several economically important lepidoptera species. According to Bayer CropScience, the material will provide rapid feeding cessation as well as long-lasting residual control for better overall protection of crop value, all without disrupting Integrated Pest Management (IPM) programs.

"The product's new mode of action disrupts the calcium balance within insect muscle cells, leading to a rapid cessation in feeding as well as paralysis of target pests," explained Steve Krueger, insecticides product development manager for Bayer CropScience in the United States. "And because Belt shows no cross-resistance to conventional insecticides, this unique new active ingredient will help manage resistance potential in armyworm, tobacco budworm and corn earworm populations.

Another benefit for growers is that the mode of action of this new active ingredient means that it can also be used to combat pests that are resistant to certain conventional insecticides from the pyrethroid, organophosphate, carbamate and IGR-type chemical groups.

Bayer CropScience, Liberty Link Soybeans
Liberty Link soybeans will offer a new soybean technology for 2009. The Liberty Link soybeans are tolerant to glufosinate. Bayer CropScience announced Liberty Link soybeans are the alternative to the non-selective herbicide option of glyphosate-tolerant soybeans.

Bayer is working with approximately 85 seed companies to offer Liberty Link soybean varieties for 2009.

Twenty-three Liberty Link varieties ranging from mid-group zero to late group four maturities will be marketed to farmers, said Frank Spelbring, vice president of marketing for Soygenetics.

In September, the European Union approved Liberty Link soybeans for import for food and feed use once they were approved to be grown in the United States.

New Ignite 280 SL herbicide was approved in 2008 for use on all Liberty Link crops to control more than 120 broadleaf weeds and grasses, including tough-to-control, ALS- and glyphosate-resistant weeds.

Ignite is registered for use on all Liberty Link crops-FiberMax cotton, InVigor canola, Liberty Link corn, including all Herculex and Agrisure CB/LL hybrids and new Liberty Link soybeans.

With Liberty Link soybeans and Ignite herbicide, Bayer noted, it has a seed and efficient herbicide combination ready for immediate grower use.

Bayer CropScience, Prosaro Fungicide
Prosaro fungicide, manufactured by Bayer CropScience, received registration in 2008 and will be available for use during the 2009 growing season. Prosaro sets a new standard for wheat and barley disease control, announced the company. It provides activity on fusarium head blight (scab) while controlling a broad range of important foliar diseases. Among the foliar diseases controlled on wheat are leaf rust, stem rust, septoria leaf and glume blotch,and tan spot. Barley leaf diseases controlled include net blotch, spot blotch, rusts and scald.

Randy Myers, Bayer CropScience fungicide portfolio manager, said U.S. cereal growers have had significant challenges, especially with scab, over the past decade. Caused by the fungal pathogen fusarium graminearum, Myers said scab causes a combination of reduction in yields, market grade and crop quality.

"Prosaro has broad-spectrum control, which allows optimum results for improved profitability and greater risk management," he said. "It offers the best available scab activity, which contributes to increased grain quality and yield. Prosaro is proven to reduce deoxynivalenol (DON) levels, thereby reducing the impact of scab on the marketability of the grain."

Growers have also battled rust along side economically-damaging leaf diseases. Specific to leaf disease control, Prosaro contains active ingredients that penetrate the leaf and are redistributed throughout the tissues, protecting both upper and lower leaf surfaces. According to Myers, the infection process is stopped when the pathogen comes in contact with the fungicide.

Hemisphere GPS, Four New Patents
Hemisphere GPS, introduced an expansion of its portfolio with four new patents. This top product award recognizes these major improvements that can be used alone and in combination for Hemisphere GPS to continue as a leader in agricultural precision tools.

The Satellite Position and Heading Sensor for Vehicle Steering Control patent is based on the company's successful and patented Crescent Vector technology used in marine navigation and various precise positioning and attitude determination applications. Multiple antennas are used to provide accurate heading and roll data in addition to position.

The technology outlined in the Portable Reference Station for Local Differential GPS Corrections patent is currently employed in the Outback Guidance BaseLineHD. This portable base station provides differential corrections and requires minimal user setup-a choice for real-time centimeter-level positioning for machine control applications.

The Articulated Equipment Position Control System and Method patent enables the position of an implement to be controlled while it is being towed behind a tractor or other self-propelled vehicle. The control system interfaces with a steering guidance system to keep the implement on a predetermined course.

The Carrier Track Loop for GNSS Derived Attitude patent provides a method and system for reducing inconsistencies on the Global Navigation Satellite System (GNSS) carrier tracking loop. This technology provides direct communication between two GPS receivers' tracking loops in order to minimize common noise induced effects.

John Deere, Nutrient Applicators
In order to meet new nutrient application requirements, John Deere launched a complete line of Nutrient Applicators, the 2510 Series, which deliver consistent, reliable nitrogen fertilizer for various field management practices.

"We've designed these tools for different applications and are introducing the following new model configurations," said Dave Wendt, product manager, John Deere Des Moines Works. "The 2510H is for high-speed application with low soil disturbance, the 2510C is for conventional application, and the 2510S is for strip-till/conservation tillage applications."

The highly productive 2510H Nutrient Applicator features a revolutionary new design that allows operators to cover more acres in less time, at field speeds of 10 miles per hour. Equipped with precision-injection technology, it's capable of applying anhydrous ammonia at high speeds with minimal soil disturbance.

Although each of the nutrient applicators could be used by custom applicators, it is the 2510H that makes custom application an economical operation compared to slower application tools bars.

The 2510C Conventional Applicator is designed with a heavy-duty frame to maintain machine stability in rougher conditions. Tandem Walk-Over wheels allow smooth performance up to eight miles per hour, and excellent transport dimensions ensure safe, efficient travel from field to field.

The 2510S Residue Master is designed for high-yielding corn-on-corn applications because of high stalk residue. The 2510S Medium-Residue Strip-till applicator is designed for light residue conditions such as soybean stubble.

Monsanto, Roundup Ready 2 Yield Soybeans
This second-generation Roundup Ready soybean technology, which will launch in 2009, provides farmers the same benefits as the original Roundup Ready trait, but with higher, top-end yield potential, according to Monsanto. These soybeans are new for their yield potential rather than their herbicide tolerance, which has been accomplished through new gene trait identification research.

Four years of field trials across six U.S. states showed 7 percent to 11 percent higher yields, compared to the first generation of Roundup Ready soybeans. When you consider the per bushel price of soybeans today, this could lead to substantial increased profits for farmers. Monsanto used the example that growers planting Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybeans could earn $45 more profit per acre based on increasing a 50-bushel yield by 9 percent when soybeans are selling for $10 per bushel.

Roundup Ready 2 Yield technology will be offered in high-performing genetics from Asgrow, as well as the American Seeds Inc. (ASI) and other regional and national soybean brands. The limited commercial release will cover as many as 2 million acres in maturity groups two and three, where more than 50 percent of U.S. soybeans are grown. A full-scale product launch is planned for 2010.

New Leader, MultiBin Spreader
The MultiBin Spreader from New Leader transforms a single hopper into three or four hoppers. It is designed as an attachment for use with the L4000G4 Fertilizer/Lime Spreader and is installed as a single component.

With the MultiBin Spreader in place, the front two hoppers dispense fertilizer products while the third hopper at the rear dispenses micronutrients or seeding products. The micronutrient hopper also can be split to create a fourth hopper. The large capacities of each hopper section allow users to cover more acres, reduce fill time while increasing productivity and maintain an accurate spread pattern.

It offers reduced fuel consumption (less horsepower requirement), reduced time in the field (wider spread widths) and reduces field compaction (fewer trips across the field). The spread width is increased from normal spreader equipment widths of 70 feet to a width of 105 feet.

Other benefits the company claims are more efficiencies and reduced operation and maintenance costs compared to typical multi-compartment air spreaders; consistency in broadcasting materials from three or four bins (independently or together) for straight and variable rate applications; an optional micronutrient cover that opens and closes with a stainless steel air cylinder; and simple installation/removal for fertilizer or lime spreading.

New Leader spokespersons said the installation and removal of the Multi-Bin Spreader is an easy operation that basically only requires connecting or disconnecting hydraulic hoses and mounting bolts.

Pioneer, Y Series Soybeans
DuPont business Pioneer Hi-Bred has launched a new generation of soybean varieties that will deliver productivity gains to North American soybean growers. The entire line has demonstrated a 5 percent yield advantage against key competitor varieties in more than 1,800 on-farm comparisons, with some varieties yielding 6 percent to 10 percent better than their competitors, according to Pioneer. The new Y Series soybeans represent the largest volume of commercial products launched in the 82-year history of Pioneer.

Pioneer intends to bring to market for 2009 planting enough seed to plant about 9 million acres of the Y series soybeans in 32 new varieties.

The launch of the new Y Series is the result of a proprietary matrix of traits and technologies Pioneer researchers have been developing and deploying to accelerate product development. Pioneer is employing its exclusive Accelerated Yield Technology (AYT) and marker-assisted selection to boost the yield potential and improve the agronomic performance of these varieties.

Pioneer intends to offer Y Series soybeans for the 2009 planting season in maturities ranging from Group 0 to Group VII. These new varieties will be easily identified with a "Y" in the Pioneer variety number, such as 93Y70.

Syngenta, Orion Herbicide
Orion herbicide offers a new class of chemistry for cereal broadleaf weed control. Registered for the 2008 growing season, Orion was approved for use on all types of wheat (including durum) and barley.

Active at a single use rate, Orion is an ideal tank-mix partner for Axial XL herbicide to deliver more efficient, one-pass grass and broadleaf weed control, Syngenta announced. Orion has crop rotation flexibility for many crops to be grown the following growing season after use, regardless of moisture levels. Syngenta noted that Orion does not need a safener to enhance its crop safety.

Orion also offers a wide window of application on crops as it can be applied from the three-leaf stage up to the boot stage in wheat, barley, oats, rye and triticale. This gives growers the power to control yield-robbing weeds before significant yield reduction occurs.

"Orion is absorbed by weed foliage and moves through both the xylem and phloem to the meristematic tissues within the weed, stopping its development within hours," explained Don Porter, herbicide technical brand manager for Syngenta. "The effective uptake and systemic movement of Orion throughout the weed ensures a complete kill."

Orion contains the new active ingredient florasulam, which is a distinctly different chemistry within the ALS inhibitor family and different than sulfonlyurea products.