West Texas cotton farmers will have three new varieties with season-long in-plant tolerance to glyphosate herbicide available for 2011.

Bayer CropScience announced Thursday (Oct. 1) that final approval for their GlyTol varieties has been received and that three FiberMax varieties—FM 9101GT, FM 9103GT and an experimental variety not yet numbered—will be available next year.

“This is big for West Texas growers,” said Paul Callaghan, Global Cotton Traits Manager for Bayer CropScience. Callaghan said GlyTol varieties offer “optimal crop safety with a wide window of application. This allows farmers to decide what glyphosate product they want to use and what herbicide trait tolerance they prefer,” he said at a cotton production field day at the company’s Idalou, Texas, breeding station.

Bayer CropScience had planned to release these varieties for 2010 planting but delayed approval from Japan, a key trading partner for U.S. cotton, prevented a 2010 launch.

Callaghan said the 2011 release will be “a significant launch.”

West Texas market

The first GlyTol varieties are adapted to West Texas, Callaghan said. “This is our initial target market. In the future, we will release some Stoneville GT varieties that will fit East of Texas.”

Farmers have tested these new offerings for three or four years in isolated plots to keep seed out of conventional channels.

“We’ve had tremendous response,” he said. “We’ve seen no concerns for crop safety at higher rates or with different formulations.”

New GlyTol varieties will replace FM 9058 Flex Acre, Callaghan said. “In comparisons over three years these varieties have shown yields and fiber quality as good as or better than 9058.”

Others coming

These three are the first of several new varieties in the Bayer pipeline.

Callaghan said the new offerings will be part of the Certified FiberMax program and would likely be part of the one-ton club “in the near future.”

Other GlyTol varieties will be released over the next three years. Callaghan said GlyTol Liberty Link varieties may be available in 2011. “It is developed and ready to go. We’re just waiting on regulatory approval. We may get that in 2011 but for certain we’ll release in 2012.”

GLB2, a combination of GlyTol, LibertyLink and Bollgard II, also may be available in 2011 but 2012 is more likely, Callaghan said.

In 2013, Bayer will release a trait package that includes GlyTol, LibertyLink and TwinLink. TwinLink is the Bayer CropScience proprietary 2-gene Bt technology. The abbreviation for this will be GLT.

Those varieties will include two herbicide tolerance traits and two insect (worm) control traits.