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Syngenta, Monsanto rearch technology deal

BASEL, Switzerland — Syngenta and Monsanto have reached agreement on corn and soybean technologies. The deal settles all outstanding litigation relating to the two companies’ global corn and soybean businesses.

The agreement provides Syngenta with more flexibility to serve customers and will expand the technology choices available to growers.

Monsanto receives a royalty-bearing license to Syngenta’s enabling technology for dicamba herbicide resistance. Syngenta receives more favorable marketing conditions relating to its Bt11 trait for European corn borer control.

Syngenta receives a royalty-bearing license to Monsanto’s Roundup Ready 2 Yield soybean technology.

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The two firms also agree to cross-enable each other to develop and deliver innovative new herbicide-tolerant and Bt insect-protection products in corn, cotton and soybeans.

Tom Breunig rejoins ABS Global’s staff

DEFOREST, Wis. — Tom Breunig has rejoined ABS Global as business development director.

"Tom’s vast knowledge of the industry coupled with his previous experience at ABS and as a consultant will be valuable to the company,’’ said Jesus Martinez, managing director of North America for ABS Global.

For the past eight years, Breunig has been consulting for animal health companies and helping the Wisconsin Livestock Indentification Consortium with its animal ID initiative.

Massy Ferguson beefs up 5400 Series tractor line

DULUTH, Ga. — Massy Ferguson is producing its 5400 Series mid-range tractors with new Tier III engines and a new look outside.

The new hood offers mid-range tractor buyers the same serviceability and style as Massey Ferguson high-horsepower 6400 and 7400 Series tractors.

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The Tier III engines burn cleaner for greater fuel efficiency. The 4-cylinder, 4.4 L Perkins engine, 4.4 L and 4.9 L SisuDiesel engines and the 6.6 L Perkins engine share multiple advanced technologies.

Co-op taking over power plant near Center

GRAND FORKS, N.D. — Minnkota Power Cooperative says it plans to take over all the electrical production from a coal-fired power plant near Center to serve its customers in eastern North Dakota and northern Minnesota.

Minnkota, of Grand Forks, says it has signed a deal with Minnesota Power, based in Duluth, Minn., to gradually increase its share from half the capacity of the Milton R. Young II power plant near Center. It plans to take all 455 megawatts from the plant by 2026.

Minnkota and Minnesota Power had equally shared the output, with Minnkota as the plant operating partner.

Under the new deal, Minnkota will take the electricity, but will sell Minnesota Power the main transmission line that stretches from the plant to Duluth, for $80 million.

Minnkota will build a new transmission line from the Milton R. Young plant to the Red River Valley, loading on its power plant capacity and new wind generation.

Alltech launches dairy workers program

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LEXINGTON, Ky. — Alltech, a leader in animal health and nutrition, has launched the Alltech Dairy Workers Program.

The national program is designed to increase the efficiency of the dairy industry’s labor force through the training and education of farm employees.

"The Alltech Dairy Workers Program will provide support to dairy farmers at the local level,’’ said Pearse Lyons, Alltech president. "We believe the farmers will achieve full circle efficiency in their operations by being better equipped to motivate their employees to greater performance.’’

Rabo AgriFinance hires John Ryan as CEO

ST. LOUIS — Rabobank International has hired John Ryan as president and CEO of its U.S. farm lending subsidiary, Rabo AgriFinance. He will assume the new duties Oct. 1.

Ryan was formerly the president and CEO of Farm Credit Canada, a position he held for a decade.

Farm Credit Canada is the largest provider of business and financial services to farms and agribusiness entities in Canada, with a lon portfolio of $14 billion and 1,300 employees.

AGCO Corporation promotes Kuper

DULUTH, Ga. — AGCO Corporation has appointed Debra Kuper as vice president, general counsel and corporate secretary, effective immediately.

Kuper replaces Stephen Lupton, who retired on April 30.

AGCO Corp. has more than 3,000 independent dealers and distributors in more than 140 countries worldwide.

Bush plan called flawed by investigators

WASHINGTON — Congressional investigators have concluded that the Bush administration lacks evidence that it would be safe to research highly infectious foot-and-mouth disease on the U.S. mainland.

Two Democratic committee leaders said it was foolish and dangerous for the administration to move ahead with those plans, given the risk of an animal epidemic if the virus escapes.

A Republican lawmaker, whose state is a finalist for a mainland facility, said a move from the outmoded facility on Plum Island, N.Y. would be safe under modern containment methods.

Nancy Kingsbury, a research expert at Congress’ Government Accountability Office, said the administration relied on a flawed study to conclude the research could safely be moved to locations near livestock.

BISMARCK, N.D. — Jerry Blotter has grown winter wheat on his central North Dakota farm for decades. This year, he’s destroying much of his crop and seeding corn and spring wheat instead.

A lack of soil moisture last fall, lack of protective snow cover for the young plants over the winter and lack of rain in the spring left him no choice, despite the added cost of reseeding.

Blotter, who farms near Coleharbor, said he lost or killed off about 400 of his 550 winter wheat acres.

"Because of the lack of moisture, it just didn’t have anything to get it up and going when it broke dormancy (this spring)," he said. "It wasn’t really a tough decision, because there was no crop there."

Other Upper Midwest farmers are in the same position, plowing under their winter wheat and starting anew with different crops, industry officials say.

Verneer introduces flexible frame wheel rake

PELLA, Iowa — Vermeer has introduced a large capacity, flexible frame wheel rake.

The V ermeer WRX14 Flex Frame Wheel Rake sweeps up to 28 feet wide. It folds for transport to 8 feet, 2 inches in a matter of seconds.

The WRX14 is equipped with 14 crop-driven rake wheels and can be fitted with an optional two-wheel center windrow splitter system for more complete turning of the windrow.

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