THOUSAND OAKS, Calif., Oct. 23, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Energy crop company Ceres, Inc. (Nasdaq: CERE) and Syngenta announced today that they have extended a joint market development agreement in Brazil. The companies will move forward with their efforts to promote the use of both sweet sorghum and high biomass sorghum at Brazilian ethanol mills.
Under the renewed agreement, Syngenta and Ceres will continue to collaborate on field evaluations with mills. Syngenta will evaluate its portfolio of crop protection products alongside Ceres hybrids, while Ceres will provide both seed and research support. Both companies will coordinate outreach to ethanol mills and develop industry training programs.
Syngenta indicated that it plans to move forward with its evaluations aimed at registering additional crop protection products for sorghum. "We see sweet sorghum as a potential complement to sugarcane in ethanol production and we are working together with Ceres to identify the best protocols to fully protect and amplify the inherent potential of this crop," said Adriano Vilas Boas, Global Marketing Director for Sugarcane at Syngenta.
"We are pleased to be working with such a well-established leader to provide our mutual customers with more choices of crop protection products for sorghum," said Andre Franco, General Manager of Ceres' local subsidiary, Ceres Sementes do Brasil Ltda. "Working together with Syngenta we have made important progress in fine-tuning crop management practices that can enhance yields through greater protection against pests, diseases and weeds."
Sweet sorghum is a hardy crop that can extend the ethanol production season by up to 60 days in Brazil. It can be grown on fallow sugarcane land and processed using the same equipment. Since it grows in as few as 90 to 120 days, it requires less water and other inputs than sugarcane. Ceres' sweet sorghum products were planted on more than 3,000 hectares this past season, with more than 30 mills. Grown primarily for its biomass productivity rather than sugar content, high biomass sorghum is an energy crop that can be used as feedstock for biopower, such as heat and electricity.
Ceres, Inc. (www.ceres.net) is an agricultural biotechnology company that markets seeds for energy crops used in the production of renewable transportation fuels, electricity and bio-based products. The company combines advanced plant breeding and biotechnology to develop products that can address the limitations of first-generation bioenergy feedstocks, increase biomass productivity, reduce crop inputs and improve cultivation on marginal land. Its development activities include sweet sorghum, high-biomass sorghum, switchgrass and miscanthus. Ceres markets its products under its Blade brand.
Syngenta is one of the world's leading companies with more than 27,000 employees in over 90 countries dedicated to our mission: Bringing plant potential to life. Through world-class science, global reach and commitment to our customers we help to increase crop productivity, protect the environment and improve health and quality of life. For more information about us please go to www.syngenta.com.
CERES FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
This press release may contain forward-looking statements. All statements, other than statements of historical facts, including statements regarding Ceres' efforts to develop and commercialize its products, anticipated yields and product performance, short-term and long-term business strategies, market and industry expectations and future results of operations and financial position, are forward-looking statements. You should not place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements because they involve known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors that are, in some cases, beyond Ceres' control. Factors that could materially affect actual results can be found in Ceres' filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission. Ceres undertakes no intention or obligation to update or revise any forward-looking statements, whether as a result of new information, future events or otherwise. These forward-looking statements should not be relied upon as representing Ceres' views as of any date subsequent to the date of this press release.
SYNGENTA FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS
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SOURCE Ceres, Inc.