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USDA Approves Syngenta and John Deere for Broadened Biotechnology Endorsement for Corn Crop Insurance

WASHINGTON, Aug. 19 /PRNewswire-FirstCall/ -- Syngenta Seeds, Inc. and John Deere Risk Protection, Inc. announced today that the U.S. Department of Agriculture's Federal Crop Insurance Corporation (FCIC) has approved Syngenta Agrisure(R) and other approved biotech corn seed brands for a broadened crop insurance endorsement that provides insurance premium discounts to farmers. This extends the program for discounts of certain federally-reinsured crop insurance policies and simplified terms to growers who use multiple biotech corn suppliers.

John Deere Risk Protection, which insures growers against yield risks, and Syngenta, jointly submitted the insurance proposal to the FCIC earlier this year. The crop insurance premium discount for growers of Agrisure seeds will initially be offered in Iowa, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Nebraska, South Dakota and Wisconsin. Additional program details will be announced this fall.

"The FCIC's approval of Agrisure and other traited corn seeds acknowledges reduced risk for growers," said Steve Ligon, Head, Syngenta Seeds Corn and Soybean Commercial Operations. "We worked with John Deere Risk Protection to create a better opportunity for growers to access crop insurance discounts. A unified endorsement aligns with growers' preferences for choice and the crop insurance industry's need for consistent policies across seed brands."

Mark Raymie, Director of Business Operations, John Deere Risk Protection, a managing general agent, said that approval of additional biotech seeds for a premium discount balances the interests of seed suppliers, insurers, agents, the Risk Management Agency and growers to create fair competition and broad choice. "The approval of this endorsement by the FCIC should spark additional discussions regarding how technology can impact risk reduction regardless of the technology provider," said Raymie. "We look forward to conversations that take into consideration the value of choice for growers, importance of market competition, and implementation considerations faced by the crop insurance industry."

Ron Litterer, President of the National Corn Growers Association, said the FCIC decision is a win for growers and the industry overall. "We applaud the work of Syngenta, John Deere Risk Protection and the FCIC and RMA in extending access to the Risk Management Biotechnology Endorsement to growers across a wider portion of the Corn Belt."

Syngenta is a world-leading agribusiness committed to sustainable agriculture through innovative research and technology. The company is a leader in crop protection, and ranks third in the high-value commercial seeds market. Sales in 2007 were approximately $9.2 billion. Syngenta employs over 21,000 people in more than 90 countries. Syngenta is listed on the Swiss stock exchange (SYNN) and in New York (NYSE: SYT). Further information is available at

John Deere Risk Protection, Inc. is a subsidiary of John Deere (Deere & Company-NYSE: DE), the world's leading provider of advanced products and services for agriculture and forestry and a major provider of advanced products and services for construction, lawn and turf care, landscaping and irrigation. John Deere also provides financial services worldwide and manufactures and markets engines used in heavy equipment. Since it was founded in 1837, the company has extended its heritage of integrity, quality, commitment and innovation around the globe.

Agrisure(R) is a registered trademark of a Syngenta Group Company.

Cautionary Statement Regarding Forward-Looking Statements

This document contains forward-looking statements, which can be identified by terminology such as 'expect', 'would', 'will', 'potential', 'plans', 'prospects', 'estimated', 'aiming', 'on track' and similar expressions. Such statements may be subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause the actual results to differ materially from these statements. We refer you to Syngenta's publicly available filings with the U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission for information about these and other risks and uncertainties. Syngenta assumes no obligation to update forward-looking statements to reflect actual results, changed assumptions or other factors. This document does not constitute, or form part of, any offer or invitation to sell or issue, or any solicitation of any offer, to purchase or subscribe for any ordinary shares in Syngenta AG, or Syngenta ADSs, nor shall it form the basis of, or be relied on in connection with, any contract therefor.

SOURCE Syngenta
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