Monsanto, BASF Form Biotech Plant Pact | Chemical & Engineering News
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Web Date: March 22, 2007

Monsanto, BASF Form Biotech Plant Pact

The $1.5 billion R&D partnership will focus on high-yield, drought-tolerant crops
Department: Business

BASF and Monsanto have joined in a long-term R&D and commercialization agreement in plant biotechnology. The joint venture will focus on development of high-yield crops and crops that are tolerant to adverse environmental conditions such as drought.

The agreement, which is effective immediately, calls for a potential joint budget of $1.5 billion to fund a pipeline of high-yield and stress-tolerance traits for corn, soybeans, cotton, and canola.

The collaboration will include the firms' existing and planned yield and stress-tolerance programs and will be made up of projects generated by third-party plant biotechnology work and research from each company. The first product developed by the venture is expected to be commercialized in the first half of the next decade.

Robb Fraley, Monsanto's chief technology officer, says the collaboration "can accelerate the discovery of next-generation technologies for the farm and effectively double the risk-adjusted net present value of Monsanto's yield and stress trait technology pipeline."

The two companies also announced that they have entered into a separate development and commercialization pact to investigate methods to control the soybean cyst nematode, a parasitic worm than can lower soybean yields.

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