Innovation in seeds and technology has helped corn producers set production records, and continued cooperation between producers and the seed industry will fuel more progress, the National Corn Growers Association (NCGA) says.

In remarks to the 14th annual convention of the American Seed Trade Association (ASTA), Bill Chase, chairman of NCGA’s Production and Stewardship Action Team, called the relationship between the two groups, “a partnership.”

"Innovation in seed, production practices and technological advances has helped ensure ample supplies of corn for livestock, an expanding ethanol industry, new biobased products and a host of other uses in the corn industry,” Chase said.

“Because of the work of many of you in this room, corn growers have seen an unprecedented increase in productivity,” he added.

Chase reviewed the latest information on ethanol, demand for feed and NCGA’s vision of 15 billion bushels of corn produced by the year 2015. He also urged the seed industry to be mindful of the export market for corn when introducing new traits. “Japan imports almost 5% of the entire U.S. corn crop,” he reminded the meeting. “This is too large of a market to jeopardize.”

Chase encouraged ASTA members to continue to submit their hybrids to the NCGA Know Before You Grow database and praised the industry’s involvement in the Market Choices program. He also reminded them to remain vigilant in encouraging customers to follow insect resistance management rules and urged the industry to provide adequate supplies of compatible refuge hybrids.

"Corn biotech research, particularly moving traits from the lab bench to field trials, has dramatically outpaced other crops,” Chase told the audience. “Our technology pipeline is full, and we look forward to the next tool to come out.”