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Posted 3 January 2017. PMN Crop News.

Monsanto Announces Launch of Bollgard 3 XtendFlex Cotton for 2017 Growing Season, Deltapine Class of 17 Cotton Varieties

Source: Monsanto Company Press Release.

Amelia Island, Florida (December 12, 2016)--Monsanto Company announced today at the Deltapine New Product Evaluator (NPE) Summit the commercialization of its new Bollgard 3® XtendFlex® Cotton, the first commercial cotton product ever with full federal approvals for the trait and in-crop herbicide system to combine three modes of action for both lepidopteran insect control and herbicide tolerance. The company also unveiled its Deltapine Class of 17 cotton varieties to more than 135 growers attending the summit who are participants in the NPE program, an initiative that provides top cotton growers the opportunity to evaluate pre-commercial Deltapine variety candidates.


The introduction of Bollgard 3 XtendFlex technology marks a major milestone for innovation in cotton, giving growers access to best-in-class germplasm while providing enhanced, season-long protection against damage caused by key lepidopteran pests, and the ability for in-crop use of dicamba.

Bollgard 3 XtendFlex technology is built on the proven and effective success of its predecessors. Containing a third protein, Vip3A, that provides a third mode of action in addition to theCry1AcandCry2AbBt proteins found in Bollgard II®. The introduction provides three unique proteins and modes of action, helping provide better insect control while increasing the longevity of the technology.

“This product has been highly anticipated by growers, and we are excited to bring Bollgard 3 XtendFlex technology to the marketplace,” said Jessie Christiansen, Monsanto Cotton Team Lead. “This launch is the latest example of Monsanto’s continuing commitment to bringing new and innovative cotton products through our pipeline, offering new benefits and solutions to growers that feature elite germplasm and enhanced protection against key pests—including armyworms and bollworms—that will enable them to produce the best crop possible.”

A limited release of Bollgard 3 XtendFlex to select NPE growers is planned in 2017, with a full-scale launch planned for 2018.

Deltapine class of 17 varieties announced

The industry’s first Bollgard II® XtendFlex® cotton variety with root-knot nematode (RKN) resistance and a high-performing early- to mid-maturity cotton variety were named to the Deltapine Class of 17 during the ninth annual NPE Summit.

Both new varieties, DP 1747NRB2XF and DP 1725 B2XF, were proven to perform by Deltapine NPE growers, who grew the varieties in large-acre plots under their own management systems in 2016. The growers’ evaluation and feedback were important to the selection of lines for commercial advancement.

DP 1747NRB2XF is the first Bollgard II XtendFlex variety that offers RKN resistance. The nematode resistance (NR) breeding trait provides season-long control to cotton plants by enabling strong root growth and reducing RKN populations in the soil profile. In NPE plots and Deltapine market development trials, DP 1747NRB2XF outyielded both DP 1454NRB2RF and DP 1558NRB2RF, two standards for yield potential in RKN-resistant varieties. DP 1747NR B2XF has shown comparable yield potential to the best-yielding commercial varieties on the market today in fields with and without RKN pressure. An added benefit of DP 1747NRB2XF is that it offers the weed control benefits of Bollgard II XtendFlex technology, part of the Roundup Ready® Xtend Crop System for Cotton.

This summer, NPE grower Nick Marshall in Baker, Fla., planted DP 1747NRB2XF as an NPE variety candidate on a half-irrigated, half-non-irrigated, sandy soil field where cotton has never performed well.

“The emergence and early vigor were very good, and it grew off into a great-looking stand,” Marshall said. “We had it planted side-by-side with DP 1646 B2XF and you could not really tell them apart. It looked healthier all season long and it handled stress better. Yield-wise, it was comparable with DP 1646 B2XF, and looks like a promising new variety.”

DP 1725 B2XF is an early- to mid-maturity variety that has shown exceptional yield potential in the Mid-South and Southeast. It is a variety that offers improved fiber quality over DP 1522 B2XF and has shown an improvement in yield potential as well.

“When we can commercialize varieties that are better than products like DP 1522 B2XF, that’s a real accomplishment because we’ve set the bar very high with the Deltapine Class of 15 and Class of 16 cotton varieties,” said Keylon Gholston, Deltapine Cotton Products Manager. “We continue to bring varieties to cotton growers that offer top-end yield and fiber quality potential, coupled with the leading technologies in the industry.”

In Centre, Ala., Deltapine NPE grower Nick McMichen said DP 1725 B2XF reminds him of the old DP 1137 B2RF variety, a very vigorous-growing variety, but one that’s easy to manage with plant growth regulators. The new Class of 17 Bollgard II XtendFlex variety stood out in his NPE plots and drew lots of attention in the field and at the gin.

“It was just an outstanding variety for us, picking over three bales to the acre in my plot,” said McMichen. “It was lights out—a really good variety. It showed that it could handle stress at that extra level because we had some tough growing conditions and it held up extremely well. It did not disappoint in yield and fiber grades. I will definitely have that in my program in 2017.”

Since it began in 2008, the Deltapine NPE Program has become the cotton industry’s premier field evaluation program, resulting in the commercialization of some of the top-planted varieties by growing region across the Belt. For more on Deltapine cotton varieties and the NPE Program, visit

Brian Leake