Here’s a look at the refuge-in-a-bag seed products that will soon be ready for the marketplace.

Dow AgroSciences

SmartStax Refuge Advanced from Dow AgroSciences will be a blend of 95% SmartStax seed and 5% non-insect-traited seed. Dow expects to have the product available for the 2012 growing season.

“Pending EPA approval, SmartStax Refuge Advanced will meet all refuge requirements for above- and belowground corn pests in a single bag,” Onstot states. “And all the seed in the bag would be tolerant to applications of glyphosate and glufoxinate herbicides, offering increased weed control options.” SmartStax Refuge Advanced will be marketed through all of the Dow AgroSciences seed affiliates.

Pioneer

Optimum AcreMax 1 received EPA registration in April and will be available for the 2011 growing season. It integrates 90% of seed containing the Herculex Xtra traits and 10% of a hybrid from the same family containing the Herculex 1 trait, which serves as the corn rootworm refuge. A 20% corn borer refuge will still be needed, but could be planted up to ½ mile away.

Optimum AcreMax RW products integrate 90% of seed containing the Herculex RW trait and 10% of a herbicide-tolerant hybrid without biotech insect protection. It may be grown alone or with Optimum AcreMax 1 to fulfill the 20% corn borer refuge that is still required.

Pioneer’s Optimum AcreMax 2 family of products will be available in 2012 pending regulatory approval and will offer two single-bag refuge options — one for growers only needing aboveground protection and one for growers needing both above- and belowground protection. No other refuge will be required for these products.

Syngenta

Syngenta expects three reduced refuge products to be approved between 2011 and 2014. The new products will be available in two planting options. The first option called Agrisure Refuge Renew calls for a refuge block of less than 20%. The second is a refuge-in-a-bag option called Agrisure E-Z Refuge.

One product up for approval is the Agrisure 3122 stack with multiple modes of action against aboveground pests and corn rootworm. A 5% refuge is required in the Corn Belt. Growers may purchase the 3122 stack as an Agrisure Refuge Renew product with a separate planted refuge or as Agrisure E-Z Refuge, the refuge-in-a-bag option.

A second product is the Agrisure Viptera 3220 refuge stack. It includes two modes of action against all major aboveground corn pests and a reduced Corn Belt refuge of 5%. This product will be available as Agrisure Refuge Renew or Agrisure E-Z Refuge options.

The third product, Agrisure Viptera 3222 refuge stack, has two modes of action against major above- and belowground corn pests. It will feature a next-generation rootworm control trait from Syngenta. Syngenta expects this single-bag refuge product to be available for 2014.

Monsanto

Monsanto has submitted two refuge-in-a-bag products for EPA approval: Genuity SmartStax and Genuity VT Double Pro. Genuity SmartStax is a blend that contains 95% SmartStax seed and 5% non-insect-traited corn seed. (Dow AgroSciences and Monsanto both submitted registration for the SmartStax refuge-in-a-bag product to the EPA.)

SmartStax includes Dow AgroSciences’ Herculex Insect Protection technologies and Monsanto’s YieldGard VT Rootworm/RR2 and Genuity VT Triple Pro technologies, as well as Roundup Ready 2 from Monsanto and LibertyLink from Bayer CropSciences. This combination results in multiple, independently active Bt proteins.

Genuity VT Double Pro provides dual modes of action, offering protection from European corn borer, southwestern corn borer, fall armyworm, and corn earworm while offering tolerance to Roundup agricultural herbicides. The product will be targeted for areas with low corn rootworm protection.

Both refuge-in-a-bag products will be sold under the name RIB Complete and are expected to be available in 2012, pending EPA approval. They will be marketed through Monsanto’s seed companies and licensees.