Farmers looking for information about the approval status of U.S.-grown corn hybrids in certain export markets now have access to the most current data through the National Corn Growers Association’s Know Before You Grow program. 

Recently updated, Know Before You Grow, featured on the association’s website, provides a comprehensive look at this vital information in an easily accessible format.

To learn more about this program, Off the Cob sat down with NCGA Trade Policy and Biotechnology Action Team Chair Jim Zimmerman, a farmer from Rosendale, Wisc. 

In his explanation of the program, Zimmerman stressed the simplicity and importance of making informed planting decisions that factor the nuances of the final market into decisions.

“The Know Before You Grow program offers a website, which is open to anyone interested, listing the approval status of the biotech traits currently available,” he explained. “This is incredibly important because farmers who are producing grain that will most likely end up in a foreign market should make sure ahead of time that the variety they plant is approved.”

Know Before You Grow stems from NCGA’s firm commitment to the principle that U.S.-grown biotech hybrids not intended for some export markets should not be placed into export channels.

Because not all hybrids are approved for all export market uses, especially in the European Union, corn growers who are selling into sensitive markets, like wet millers, should select hybrids with the full knowledge of whether they are conventional, fully approved for EU export or not yet fully approved for EU export.

Growers should read their grower agreements before planting and communicate with their grain buyers.

This is why NCGA works with technology providers to publicize regular updates on the approval status of these events. Regardless of export status, there is an ample market for U.S. biotech corn — approximately 42 percent of all U.S.-grown corn is fed to domestic livestock.

To listen to the full interview, click here.