Des Moines, Iowa (NAPSI) - Agricultural companies typically conduct test plots of new seed products before they are introduced. Taking the process to a new level, however, is the large-scale testing program known as Ground BreakersSM.

This season, 250 leading progressive growers across the westernGreat Plainshad the opportunity to test and evaluate Monsanto’s Genuity® DroughtGard™ Hybrids. These products—planned to be the newest offering from the Genuity corn traits family—are intended to help farmers mitigate yield loss caused by drought.

“Unlike most smaller plots typically used for product evaluations, Ground Breakers involves 20- to 40-acre trials, each containing two or three different hybrids,” said Matt Kirkpatrick, Monsanto Corn Traits marketing manager. “This program enables farmers to preview our newest products and systems prior to commercialization to obtain a better understanding of how they will perform in on-farm conditions.”

The company intends to introduce Genuity DroughtGard Hybrids—part of a comprehensive drought-tolerant corn system—for commercial planting in 2013.

“I’m very excited to be a part of the Ground Breakers program, especially since I live in an area that has limited precipitation,” saidNebraskafarmer Nick Keller. “The program is a great fit for my dryland farming, and I hope to see overall better plant health with the result being an increase in yield during harvest.”

The Genuity® DroughtGard™ Hybrids trait has been deregulated by the U.S. Department of Agriculture. Import approvals in key corn export markets with functioning regulatory systems are in progress. For 2013, DroughtGard™ Hybrids will be commercially available in the westernGreat Plainsarea to growers who have signed and agree to follow the Genuity DroughtGard Hybrids Stewardship Agreement.

It is a violation of national and international law to move material containing biotech traits across boundaries into nations where import is not permitted. ALWAYS READ AND FOLLOW PESTICIDE LABEL DIRECTIONS. Genuity® and DroughtGard™ are trademarks of Monsanto Technology LLC. Ground BreakersSM is a servicemark of Monsanto Company. ©2012 Monsanto Company.