Monsanto to directly market its cotton seeds in India

New Delhi | Updated on July 07, 2014 Published on July 07, 2014


Set to launch its global brand Deltapine from the current kharif season

Monsanto will start selling cotton hybrid seeds in India under its global brand ‘Deltapine’ from the current kharif season.

Currently, Monsanto Holdings Private Ltd (MHPL) – the 100 per cent-owned Indian subsidiary of the US agri-biotech major – is marketing cotton seeds under the ‘Paras Brahma’ brand. This brand belonged to Emergent Genetics India Ltd, a firm that Monsanto had acquired in 2005.

“The introduction of the Deltapine brand from this year shows our commitment to growing the cotton hybrid seeds business in India,” Jesus Madrazo, Vice-President (Corporate Engagement) of the St Louis, Missouri-headquartered company told Business Line. There is no plan, though, to phase out the ‘Paras Brahma’ brand, he said.

Monsanto has a four per cent market share of the estimated 45 million-packets-a-year Indian cotton hybrids seeds market.

The main players in this ₹3,700-crore segment are Nuziveedu Seeds, Kaveri Seeds, Mahyco, Ajeet Seeds, Ankur Seeds, DCM Shriram Bioseed and Rasi Seeds.

All these companies, nevertheless, use Monsanto’s proprietary ‘Bollgard’ insect pest resistance technology in their hybrids.

For this, they pay a trait fee amounting to roughly 20 per cent of the maximum retail price.

According to industry observers, the introduction of ‘Deltapine’ brand indicates Monsanto’s keenness to use both the Bollgard technology licensing as well as direct marketing routes to expand its cotton seeds business in India.

Monsanto is already an established direct market player in the hybrid corn and vegetable seeds segments. Sales in both these are under Monsanto’s global brands: ‘Dekalb’ (corn) and ‘Seminis’ (hot pepper, tomato, cauliflower, cabbage and beans).

In hybrid corn, Monsanto India Ltd – a listed company, in which MHPL and the American parent together hold 72.14 per cent – has a 25 per cent share of ₹1,500-2,000-crore market, in which DuPont-Pioneer, Syngenta India, Nuziveedu, Kaveri and Bioseed are the other major players.

MHPL has a roughly 10 per cent share of the country’s ₹1,500-2,000 crore vegetable hybrid seeds market, which also has the likes of Nunhems (a Bayer CropScience subsidiary), Syngenta and Namdhari Seeds.

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Published on July 07, 2014
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