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Industry News

MANA’s New Hires
MANA announces the addition of Duane A. Martin, Ph.D., as the company’s new business and product development manager and Tim Ford as an area business manager on its sales team across Louisiana and southern Mississippi.

Martin comes to MANA with nearly 20 years of experience in the crop protection industry. He most recently worked as the senior brand manager of herbicides with Syngenta. Prior to that, he was a BASF marketing portfolio manager. Martin graduated from the University of Missouri with a bachelor’s degree in agricultural mechanization and earned a Ph.D. in agronomy from the University of Wyoming. Martin lives in Chapel Hill, N.C., and will work out of MANA’s headquarters in Raleigh.

Ford spent the past 11 years as a technical sales representative specializing in ag products with AMVAC Chemical Co. He graduated from Louisiana Tech University with a degree in agribusiness and will continue to reside in Sicily Island, La., with his wife, Kellie, and their two children, Ryne and Megan.


NCGA-BASF Agriculture Scholarship
The National Corn Growers Associa-tion and BASF have joined forces for the second year in a row to award five $1,000 scholarships annually to undergraduate and graduate students pursuing a degree in an agriculture-related field.

Applicants must be entering at least their second undergraduate year, and they, a parent or legal guardian must be an NCGA member. Applications must be postmarked on or before Jan. 23, 2009. Complete rules are in the application packet at www.ncga.com/scholarship.


New Insect Protection Technology For Corn
A limited supply of YieldGard VT Triple PRO from Monsanto will be commercially available in 2009.

YieldGard VT Triple PRO represents a step-change in Bt technology for insect protection in corn. It is the first technology to produce two different Bt proteins to protect the corn plant from common above-ground insects that feed on the plant, such as European corn borer, corn earworm and fall armyworm, while also providing the existing rootworm protection and Roundup Ready traits in a single plant.

Currently, corn growers are required to plant a “structured refuge” or plots of corn that do not use Bt technology near corn acres using in-plant protection. The current required percentage of refuge acres varies based on specific geography, but in general is set at 50 percent in the southern United States and 20 percent in the Corn Belt.

Research conducted by Monsanto and reviewed by scientists at key academic institutions indicates the use of dual-protein technologies, like the dual proteins for corn borer in YieldGard VT Triple PRO, allows the percentage of structured refuge in Southern cotton-growing states to be reduced without negatively impacting long-term effectiveness of the technology. The EPA previously granted a reduced refuge requirement for YieldGard VT Triple PRO in Southern states, dropping the corn borer refuge requirements from 50 to 20 percent.

Beginning in 2009, Southern growers can take advantage of this reduced refuge opportunity by planting YieldGard VT Triple PRO.


‘Next Generation’ Lightbar Guidance
Topcon Precision Agriculture has introduced the new System 110, a rugged field tool delivering the “next generation” of precision technology in lightbar guidance. This stand-alone system offers on-screen coverage mapping, a detachable lightbar for optimum “field of view” placement and optional 10-section ASC (automatic section control). System 110 will increase productivity and reduce costs for farming applications.

More information on System 110 is available at: www.topconprecisionag.com/system110.


Williams Accepts LA Position
The LSU AgCenter has named Dr. Bill Williams as state weed specialist for agricultural crops. Williams will be responsible for developing, coordinating and conducting weed management education programs in agricultural crops, including cotton, soybeans, corn, small grains and forages.

In addition, he will continue to conduct weed management research focusing on Northeast Louisiana rice, corn, grain sorghum and other agronomic crops, working out of the LSU AgCenter’s Scott Research and Extension Center in Winnsboro.

Williams has served as project leader for corn, rice, grain sorghum and small grains weed management research at the LSU AgCenter’s Northeast Research Station in St. Joseph since 1996.

Williams can be contacted at (318) 334-3360 or email bwilliams@agcenter.lsu.edu.


Unique 2009 Calendar Offered
Over the past year, Missouri photographer Dan Hemmelgarn and his wife Melinda have met with 12 farmers to produce a unique local product: “Farm Hands – A Tribute to the hands that feed us.” This special work of art is a calendar that depicts the pleasures and challenges of farming.

While Dan shot the photographs, Melinda interviewed farmers and their families. Each month shares the treasured relationships with land, animals, working outside in nature’s beauty and producing “good” food. The images of the farmers’ hands – in sepia tone – are absolutely beautiful and speak volumes. There is also a brief insight into the farmer’s philosophy about our food system.

Calendars are on sale at the Columbia Farmers’ Market Saturday mornings 8:00-noon. Proceeds benefit the Farmers’ Market Pavilion Fund. Calendars make great holiday gifts, and this one’s even better because it gives back to the community. Order online at: www.columbiafarmersmarket.org/calendar/.


Ways To Deter Copper Theft

Valley Irrigation is introducing a line of products under the new CableGuard umbrella. The products are designed to help prevent the theft of copper wiring from irrigation equipment.

According to Rich Panowicz, manager, Valley aftermarket sales and product management for Valmont Irrigation, says, “We don’t believe in one-size-fits-all, so we’d like producers to think of the product offerings as a menu and work with their Valley dealers to determine what’s best for them.”

The six new products are Heavy Duty Span Cable Clamps, Heavy Duty Stainless Steel Banding, Heavy Duty Flexible Steel Conduit, Heavy Duty Mesh with Steel Conduit, Cable Armor and GSM CableGuard Monitor. To learn more about the products, visit www.ValleyIrrigation.com.