Dow AgroSciences LLC, a wholly-owned subsidiary of The Dow Chemical Company, announced Conkesta will be the brand name for its novel insect-resistant trait that, when commercialized, will provide soybean farmers with the broadest spectrum for insect control against lepidopteran pests. The company’s insect-resistant soybean trait, originally announced to the market in 2013, continues to move through regulatory processes as the first trait to be submitted for approvals that expresses two Bt proteins. Conkesta will provide broader in-plant protection of lepidopteran pests, as well as improve sustainability of the technology compared to other soybean technologies being advanced in the market with only one Bt protein.
Submitted to regulatory authorities for approval in key soybean countries as part of the global authorization process, Conkesta is initially targeted for commercialization in South America. Brazil represents the largest opportunity where insect pressure results in significant yield loss every year. Argentina soybean farmers also face significant impact to their soybean yields due to insects. The company plans to broadly license the Conkesta technology to regional seed companies in these countries to provide wide access for farmers.
Upon regulatory approvals, Conkesta will be offered as a stack with the company’s innovative Enlist™soybean traits in elite and high-yielding varieties. This integrated solution will provide much-needed insect control as well as tolerance to multiple herbicides for improved weed management, allowing crops to maximize yield in a highly efficient and sustainable manner.
“Conkesta is outstanding technology that will help farmers control significant lepidopteran pests,” says Rolando Meninato, global leader, Seeds, Dow AgroSciences. “Combining this new technology with our Enlist™ Weed Control System and market leading germplasm will deliver the broadest pest control package of both insect and weed management so soybeans can deliver their maximum yield potential.”