Seed World

BASF Launches the Axant Flex Herbicide Trait

Today, BASF announced its newest cotton innovation to prevail over resistant weeds, Axant Flex herbicide trait technology. This unprecedented quadruple-trait herbicide stack provides tolerance to Alite 27 herbicide1, BASF’s latest herbicide offering for cotton growers battling difficult to control weeds. This innovation is in addition to proven resistance management herbicide solutions Liberty and Engenia as well as glyphosate. BASF plans to bring Axant Flex technology to market in select FiberMax and Stoneville cottonseed varieties for the 2023 growing season, pending herbicide regulatory approval and identified country import approvals for the trait event.

“Herbicide-resistant weed pressure is one of the most pervasive challenges cotton growers face,” said Luke Mankin, BASF North America regional marketing manager. “For decades, BASF has committed to bringing cotton growers new solutions to combat increasingly resistant weeds, and now with Axant Flex technology, we can give growers back the control and flexibility they need to more effectively win the war against weeds.”

The launch of Axant Flex technology provides cotton growers with the latest innovations in weed management as well as a few firsts for the cotton industry:

  • Axant Flex technology features the Axant herbicide trait, the first trait developed and commercialized in cotton to enable the use of Alite 27 herbicide, an HPPD herbicide, plus GlyTol, LibertyLink and XtendLink technology traits.
  • XtendLink technology enables cotton growers to spray over-the-top applications of Engenia herbicide.
  • With Axant Flex technology, BASF will be the first and only company to offer a quadruple-herbicide tolerant/resistant trait stack in cotton in the U.S. market that helps growers gain control over yield-robbing weeds like Palmer amaranth.

Axant Flex technology provides cotton growers more weed control options and improved flexibility in creating weed management strategies.

  • Growers can use four modes of action for more effective control of resistant weeds.
  • Upon EPA approval, Alite 27 herbicide will provide more flexibility for many growers earlier in the season and can be applied pre-emergence or early post-emergence, as well as tank-mixed with other residual and knockdown herbicides to work within growers’ weed management program.
  • The use of Alite 27 herbicide provides early control of difficult to manage weeds, giving cotton growers peace of mind and a widened application window to address post-emergent weed issues without the need to rush back into the field.

Axant Flex technology will be bred into the genetics growers have come to trust from BASF cottonseed brands, FiberMax and Stoneville. With the new Axant Flex trait technology, growers will not have to choose between the weed control they want and the fiber quality and yield potential they demand.

“I’m proud to be part of a team and a company that’s committed to delivering innovation that helps cotton farmers succeed in the fight against weeds,” said Dr. Stephane Pien, BASF Global Cotton Project Leader. “The commercialization of this trait technology has been more than a decade in the making and we’re excited that U.S. cotton producers will soon be able to take advantage of the benefits the Axant trait delivers.”