HERCULEX RW and Herculex XTRA will be the product names for the next generation of traits in the Herculex Insect Protection family from Dow AgroSciences LLC and Pioneer Hi-Bred International, Inc. The new family of traits will offer corn growers the broadest spectrum in-plant insect protection on the market.

Herculex RW will give farmers built-in protection against corn rootworm, the costliest insect pest in corn. Herculex XTRA will combine the insect protection of Herculex I — broad-spectrum protection against corn borer, black cutworm, western bean cutworm and other destructive pests — with the corn rootworm protection of Herculex RW, according to Dow AgroSciences.

Introduction of corn hybrids containing Herculex RW and Herculex XTRA is anticipated for the 2006 growing season, pending regulatory approvals.

The trait combination in Herculex XTRA will provide protection all season against major corn insect pests, including western, northern and Mexican corn rootworm, first- and second-generation European corn borer, southwestern corn borer, black cutworm, western bean cutworm and fall armyworm, along with intermediate suppression of corn earworm.

It also will provide tolerance to Liberty herbicide, which controls more than 100 grass and broadleaf weeds on contact.

Dow AgroSciences and Pioneer will continue to independently market and sell corn hybrids containing Herculex traits. As with Herculex I, Dow AgroSciences also will have exclusive licensing rights for Herculex RW and Herculex XTRA.