The rise of the use of biotech traits in agriculture remains an astounding phenomenon. In less than 20 years, the use of insect and weed-control traits has risen above the 90% mark for both corn and soybeans in the latest figures released by USDA.

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It's the success of the technology and its efficacy that has farmers buying, but these days the choices availble to the corn seed buyer alone is tremendous. "We see confusion from customers and competitor's customers," says Jill Wheeler, Syngenta product lead, commercial traits. "The number of stacks available to meet a variety of needs can be overwhelming."

As always an informed dealer can help a farmer pick the best traits, but it's also a good idea to walk into that conversation armed with some knowledge of key selection issues too. Wheeler notes that managing modes of action is as important in seed traits as it is with the crop protection products you use.

And no matter whose trait package you look at there are ways to be sure you're doubling up on modes of action when dealing with tough pests.