DuPont has announced that growers who plant Pioneer brand corn hybrids with the Herculex XTRA trait, including those stacked with the Roundup Ready Corn 2 trait, will be eligible for crop insurance premium reductions in select states in 2009.

DuPont business Pioneer Hi-Bred received approval from the Federal Crop Insurance Corporation board of directors to be part of a new crop insurance program, Risk Management Biotechnology Endorsement.

The Risk Management Agency announced the BE program for Pioneer corn hybrids will include non-irrigated corn for grain in Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Michigan, Minnesota, Ohio, South Dakota and Wisconsin.

Pioneer worked on an industrywide team to help bring the expanded crop insurance program to farmers.

Many Pioneer sales representatives offer crop insurance through PHI Insurance Services, Inc.

“The approval of this program for Pioneer products with the Herculex XTRA trait clearly indicates this trait lowers a grower's risk,” said Paul E. Schickler, DuPont vice-president and general manager and Pioneer president.

“This technology protects field crops, contributes to greater yields and helps growers get more value from each acre of land. We're glad that our customers can benefit from programs such as Biotechnology Endorsement.”

Herculex XTRA technology by Dow AgroSciences LLC and Pioneer is a combination of the Herculex I trait and Herculex RW rootworm protection gene to guard against a broader range of above- and below-ground insects in corn than any other product on the market.

The Herculex I gene protects the corn plant against European and southwestern corn borer, western bean cutworm, black cutworm, fall armyworm, corn earworm, sugarcane borer, southern cornstalk borer and lesser cornstalk borer, while the Herculex RW trait protects against western, northern and Mexican corn rootworms.

Studies have shown that corn hybrids containing Herculex XTRA and Herculex XTRA with the Roundup Ready Corn 2 traits yielded significantly more bushels per acre than hybrids without these traits.

Under higher environmental stress levels, the advantage for the hybrids with these traits was even greater, providing better performance under more stressful conditions.

For additional information go to http://www.dupont.com or http://www.pioneer.com.