About “Beyond the Rows”

Beyond the Rows is a Monsanto Company blog focused on one of the world’s most important industries, agriculture. Monsanto employees write about Monsanto’s business, the agriculture industry, and the farmer.
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Monsanto’s Plant Breeders Play Matchmaker

By Brandie Piper
Monsanto Corporate Engagement

Matchmakers have a long history of pairing together two people who complement each other in the hopes of fostering a relationship. The process is similar for plant breeders and the crops they study.

Like matchmakers, the goal of plant breeders is to bring together the two plants best-suited for each other so they can produce offspring with the best characteristics of both. The resulting offspring are called hybrids or varieties, depending on the crop. At Monsanto, our plant breeders play matchmaker every day to all types of crops such as corn, soybeans, peppers, … Full Article »

Monsanto Philippines Storytelling Sessions Underscore Sustainability, Helping Others, and Improving Lives Featured Article

The Provincial Learning and Resource Center of Cagayan, Philippines recently held a storytelling session on the only Filipino children’s book on biotech corn seeds titled Lina’s Town Rises Again.

Lina’s Town Rises Again was written for elementary school children to develop a basic understanding of the impact of agriculture products, specifically Dekalb corn seeds in social, economic and environmental terms. It touches on the themes of sustainability, collaboration and safety by narrating the true and inspiring story of how agricultural biotechnology seeds positively transformed a woman farmer’s life, and enabled her farming community to recover economically in the aftermath of … Full Article »

ISAAA Releases 2013 Report on Biotech Crops Featured Article

Eighteen Million Farmers in 27 Countries Chose Biotech Crops in 2013, Global Plantings Increase by 5 Million Hectares

The International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications (ISAAA) today released a report showing that more than 18 million farmers in 27 countries planted biotech crops in 2013, reflecting a five million, or three percent, increase in global biotech crop hectarage. 2013 also marks the first-ever commercial plantings of drought-tolerant biotech maize in the United States.

Global biotech crop hectarage has increased from 1.7 million hectares in 1996 to over 175 million hectares in 2013. During this 18 year period, more … Full Article »

Monsanto’s Business in Europe Featured Article

Some recent reports are suggesting—again!—that Monsanto is withdrawing from business activities in Europe. The opposite is true. We’re actually expanding our operations in the conventional seed business in Europe, and will continue to sell Europe’s only successful commercial biotech crop, our MON810 corn, to farmers in several European countries. But we’ll no longer be pursuing approvals for cultivation of new biotech crops in Europe. Instead, we’ll focus on enabling imports of biotech crops into the EU and expanding our current business, particularly in Eastern Europe.

Monsanto´s business in Europe is very strong and growing. To better serve farmers in Europe, … Full Article »

Picking the Perfect Ears of Sweet Corn Featured Article

By Carly Scaduto
Vegetables Division

During a recent trip to the grocery store, I headed for the big bin of sweet corn right in front. It was crowded with customers just like me seeking the perfect ears of sweet corn. I think I have a leg up on the average consumer when it comes to picking the perfect ear of sweet corn because I have talked to several sweet corn farmers about what to look for. One of the first things I do is peel back the husk to make sure there aren’t any missing or damaged kernels. Damaged kernels … Full Article »

GM Sweet Corn: Three Reasons I Love It Featured Article

By Kenny Avery
Vegetables Division

One of the many reasons I like summer is for all the fresh and flavorful produce, especially sweet corn. As Monsanto’s Global Vegetable Business Lead, I’ve enjoyed some recent opportunities to taste our freshly-picked biotech sweet corn from our research fields. Not only does it taste great, but the environmental benefits of our biotech sweet corn truly makes it an outstanding product.

I want to share with you why I’m a big fan of our biotech sweet corn, and why I am thrilled our vegetable seed brand, Seminis®, is offering it to growers in the … Full Article »

I’m Chris, and I feed my kids food made from GMO crops Featured Article

By Chris
Information Technology

In the run up to the March Against Monsanto, I, along with a few dozen of my colleagues, had our names and work phone numbers posted to the internet. Mine were probably lifted from a news release I distributed two jobs and seven years ago.

Predictably, this posting resulted in some calls.  Interestingly, the first two callers both mentioned my kids. The first asked whether I feed my kids foods made from GMO crops. Well, yeah. I eat these foods, and my kids eat these foods (and, yes, contrary to internet mythology, these foods are served … Full Article »

Washington Post: “Dealing with Oregon’s Rogue Wheat” Featured Article

Yesterday, the Washington Post published an editorial about the report of GM wheat being found in Oregon.

“It’s a sign of the extreme sensitivity over genetically modified foods in some parts of the world that the discovery of a patch of pesticide-resistant wheat in Oregon was enough to convince Japan and South Korea this week to halt some imports of the crop from the United States,” the Post said. “The move might allay the fears of some East Asian consumers, at the expense of U.S. farmers and to the detriment of the warmer trading relations the two Asian governments seek … Full Article »

Recipe for Recycling Old News – Food & Water Watch’s Latest Report Featured Article

Cookbook by Food & Water Watch and Reuters.

Recipe: “Biotech Ambassadors: Diplomacy or Marketing” by Food & Water Watch

Ingredients:  Wikileaks reports that were released in 2010 and reported on ad nauseam for months in 2011.

Instructions: Marinate for 3 years; repackage in a newish looking report replete with anti-biotech and anti-Monsanto dogma; finish with wire service report that neglects to inform readers that this is old news.

Aftertaste: bad.

Serves: Food & Water Watch.

What Monsanto provided to the Reuters reporter: “We are aware of Wikileaks reports which were released in 2010 that mention … Full Article »

Experts Review the Safety of GM Corn Featured Article

Monsanto is committed to ensuring that our products contribute to a safe, healthful and reliable global food supply. Our families and our communities rely on us and the various experts involved in testing and reviewing the safety of the crops we produce. We take that responsibility to heart.

Biotech crops have been reviewed and tested more than any other crops in the history of agriculture and have been shown to be as safe and nutritious as their conventional counterparts. In addition, each of Monsanto’s products has undergone many years of research, field trials and comprehensive testing before submission for regulatory review. … Full Article »