BASF collecting data to solve mystery of slow establishment with certain canola varieties

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BASF says it expects to know more within a couple weeks on why certain InVigor canola hybrids in Western Canada have appeared to stall in their development after emerging from the ground.

The company issued a statement late last week acknowledging it was aware of a performance issue with some InVigor varieties.

In most of the affected fields, the rate of crop emergence has not been the main problem, explains Brent Collins, head of seeds and traits for BASF in Canada, discussing the issue with RealAgriculture in the interview below.

“It’s been more the establishment. The cotyledons come out, the first and second leaves come out, and then the plants are not going on to the next phase like we normally would expect it to be,” he says.

BASF has established a dedicated team to collect data on what the affected fields may have in common.

While questions have been raised on social media about a new seed treatment used on a portion of InVigor canola this year, the company has not been able to point to or rule out any contributing factors at this point, says Collins.

“We’re certainly still in the stage where we’re collating — environmental conditions, seed, seed treatment, all the parameters you would think would need to be evaluated, and we’re still a ways off from being able to pinpoint whether it’s one contributor or perhaps a few variables involved,” he says.

The problem is not limited to one InVigor variety, he says. And geographically, it’s showing up in “very select pockets” across Western Canada. “We’re not talking a lot of acres, but when the acres are affected, obviously our growers and partners are having concerns,” he says, noting they’re optimistic the affected canola will outgrow the issue.

While InVigor varieties account for the majority of canola acres in Western Canada, Collins says he’s not able to comment on whether seed from other companies is experiencing the same challenges.

He encourages growers who think they have a problem with an InVigor variety to call BASF’s customer line at 1-877-371-2273.

“I’m hopeful that in a couple of weeks we’ll have some pretty clear trends that we’ll be able to put together,” says Collins.

Check out the interview below for from BASF’s Brent Collins on the issues observed with some canola in 2022:

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