14:03 PM | February 28, 2020 | Natasha Alperowicz in Ludwigshafen
BASF announced today that it has increased its projected peak sales potential for its innovation pipeline of agricultural solutions to more than €7.5 billion ($8.2 billion). The company says that by 2029, it will launch more than 30 key projects, including novel seeds and traits, chemical and biological crop protection, digital products, and new formulations broadening its offer.
In line with its strategy in agriculture, the company is increasing focus on connected solutions for farmers to enable balancing agricultural productivity, environmental protection, and society’s needs. BASF will build on its R&D investment for agricultural solutions over recent years with a planned expenditure in 2020 around the €879 million spent last year, accounting for around 11% of sales for the segment.
“Our aim is to find practical solutions that enable higher yielding and more stress-tolerant crop production, reduce farming’s CO2 footprint, and increase biodiversity,” said Vincent Gros, president of BASF’s agricultural solutions division.
BASF’s innovation pipeline is focused on new technologies and solutions for four strategic customer segments and their respective crop systems: soy, corn, cotton; wheat, canola, sunflowers; rice; and fruit and vegetables. The wheat, canola, and sunflower segment is catering to a market valued at around €12 billion. In this market, BASF is developing solutions for climate-resilient farming with higher yielding as well as drought- and heat-tolerant crops that require fewer resources, such as water and plant protection products. They enable farmers to sustainably increase yields and reduce tillage, thereby minimizing erosion and greenhouse gas emissions.
In herbicides, BASF has developed two novel herbicide active ingredients, Luximo and Tirexor. From 2020, these will give wheat farmers new possibilities to manage difficult-to-control grasses and broadleaf weeds. Additionally, BASF is working on further new modes of action to manage herbicide-resistant weeds and allow farming practices that reduce CO2 footprint, such as no-till farming.
BASF fungicides portfolio saw a recent launch of Revysol, a fungicide active ingredient that meets regulatory standards and offers “outstanding” biological performance against a range of difficult-to-control pathogens in specialty and row crops. In addition, the novel fungicide active ingredient Pavecto, co-developed with Sumitomo Chemical, will provide farmers with a tool for resistance management.
BASF is also expanding its insecticides portfolio. It has developed Broflanilide together with Mitsui Chemicals Agro. The new active ingredient, to be launched from 2020 onward, will help farmers protect specialty and field crops from insect pests such as potato beetles. Seed treatment applications based on Broflanilide, marketed under the Teraxxa brand, will target difficult-to-manage wireworms in cereal crops. Together with the recently launched insecticide Inscalis, Broflanilide is part of the next wave of insecticide innovations that will be launched by BASF throughout this decade.