Affected by prolonged rainfall, weed resistance issues, and higher manufacturing costs the U.S. crop protection industry remained strong in 2013, posting an 8.2% increase over the previous year. Net manufacturers’ sales within the crop protection industry total $9.2 billion, according to the recently published Crop Protection Manufacturers Report: A Strategic Market Analysis of the U.S. Crop Protection Industry by worldwide consulting and research firm Kline & Company.
In anticipation of a healthy planting season, corn growers purchased high inventories of herbicides but excessive spring wetness in the Corn Belt and throughout the country caused almost 2 million acres to remain fallow and deferred spring planting, forcing some corn growers to switch to short maturity soybean varieties. The wet conditions reduced insect pressure, causing the insecticide segment to decline at a double-digit percentage while promoting disease pressure and modestly increasing fungicide sales. However, many growers halted or did not start fungicide applications as the wet weather was soon replaced by the summer time droughts. The plant growth regulators segment declines slightly as it heavily targets the cotton markets where acres planted decrease almost 16% in 2013. Continue reading