66 / SEEDWORLD.COM JUNE 2018 Exploring ideas and views on all aspects of the seed industry. MONSANTO COLLABORATION DEVELOPS SPRAYER SYSTEM CLEANER Monsanto Company announced that it has collaborated with Adjuvants Unlimited, LLC to develop the first-ever agricultural sprayer system cleaner designed to deactivate dicamba. Adjuvants Unlimited, a well-known developer and manufacturer of technologies for the crop protection industry, will bring this technology to market in 2018 through their industry partners. The new sprayer cleaner technology is unique from other currently commercially-available sprayer equipment cleaners as it is based on a chemical process that deactivates certain pesticide active ingredients, including dicamba. This technology is designed to be used within the rinse and cleanout processes specified on current dicamba product labels and best management practices. “Monsanto developed this product based on grower interest in new tools to help manage the use of multiple herbicide systems, including the Roundup Ready Xtend Crop System,” says Ryan Rubischko, Monsanto dicamba portfolio lead. “This is a new mode of action for sprayer system cleaners and will provide growers an even better experience when utilized as part of the Roundup Ready Xtend Crop System with XtendiMax herbicide with VaporGrip Technology, a restricted use pesticide.” Monsanto has been working with Adjuvants Unlimited and academics over the past few years to test this technology prior to bringing it to market. “We have been testing this new technology in university trials, and it has proven to be very effective at cleaning sprayer systems that have contained dicamba tank mixed with additional herbicide products,” says Dan Reynolds, professor of Weed Science and Hartwig Endowed Chair at Mississippi State University. “We have seen a significant reduction in the presence of dicamba when utilizing this technology as part of the labeled sprayer cleanout process.” Monsanto and Adjuvants Unlimited anticipate that the initial product offering will be announced in the coming weeks and available for the 2018 season, and additional branded products and distributors will be available in the future. USDA’S NIFA INVESTS IN RESEARCH ON THE IMPLICATIONS OF GENE EDITING TECHNOLOGIES The U.S. Department of Agriculture’s National Institute of Food and Agriculture (NIFA) announced awards to advance research on public engagement and the implications of gene drive and other gene editing technologies. The funding is made possible through the Social Implications of Emerging Technologies initiative within NIFA’s Agriculture Economics and Rural Communities program area. “Recent advances in gene editing technologies promise opportunities for meeting challenges that come with a rapidly growing global population,” says NIFA acting director Tom Shanower. “However, these advances also raise important questions about their acceptability and potential unintended impacts, so NIFA created the Social Implications of Emerging Technologies program in 2017 to fund research on stakeholder and public engagement ...” A University of Florida project will define consumer preferences for regulation and consumption of food derived from gene- edited crops and determine the most effective way to communicate about gene- editing technology to educate consumers. Researchers at Iowa State University will identify key inducements and impediments to public trust of gene-edited foods and their governance. A Santa Fe Institute of Science project has three immediate objectives: develop a quantitative theoretical framework to model complex social-cognitive processes as applied to the particular context of genetically modified crops; use the framework to develop research hypotheses; and test predictions in a longitudinal experimental study on a national sample. Texas A&M University will evaluate the environment for public and stakeholder engagement around the potential research, development, and use of gene drive technology in the control of agricultural pests in Texas.