Through data and advanced plant breeding methods, our plant breeders increasingly understand genetic characteristics and focus on developing seeds that can produce better harvests, such as through greater tolerance to adverse weather conditions or increased disease resistance over previous generations. We work to efficiently identify, select, and develop seed that has characteristics which will bring improved attributes to the farm. One of the advanced breeding methods Monsanto is exploring is gene editing, which enables plant scientists to make precise improvements within a plant’s DNA, which we believe will offer new tools to help farmers deliver better harvests in the years ahead.
For some row crops we use plant biotechnology to develop highly effective solutions for the farm. Biotechnology can help make plants more tolerant to adverse weather conditions, strengthen plant resistance to insects, and enable more effective weed control and farming practices that are more sustainable and better for the environment.
The vast majority of vegetable seed crops are produced without biotechnology, although biotechnology is used to support insect resistance for select varieties of sweet corn and disease resistance for some squash varieties.
We make our seed available to customers through various channels. Our row crop seed brands include DEKALB®, Asgrow®, Deltapine®, Channel®, and WestBred®, which are complemented by regional brands. Our vegetable brands are Seminis® and De Ruiter®.
In addition to our own brands, we also make our seed germplasm and/or biotech traits available to approximately 200 seed companies and distributors across the United States through our seed and trait licensing division, Corn States. Specifically, Monsanto licenses germplasm and traits for crops including corn, soybean, cotton, sorghum, and canola, among others.