- Supply chain shortages, the war in Ukraine and natural disasters have created an urgent need for increases in U.S. wheat production that can be met using new soil biologicals
- Studies show the recently expanded Pantego® line of soil probiotics from Locus Agricultural Solutions® (Locus AG) increased wheat yields by an average of 7 bushels/acre, equaling 11% above grower’s practice and $46 more revenue per acre for U.S. wheat growers
- The products also increased soil nutrients by 213%, enabling cereal cover crop farmers to maximize soil fertility, optimize nutrient use and enhance regenerative agriculture practices
SOLON, Ohio (October 14, 2022) As farmers around the U.S. plant their winter wheat and cover crops, recently released independent research data finds that the use of soil biologicals by Locus Agricultural Solutions (Locus AG) increases yields by an average of 11% (7 bushels/acre) and soil nutrients by 213%. Six independent contract research organizations (CROs) conducted the studies across the Midwest and South on the recently expanded Pantego® line of biologicals. The substantial increases from the phosphorus-solubilizing products enable U.S. cereal cash or cover crop farmers to optimize production and input use, resulting in an average of $46 more revenue per acre.
Global Challenges Create Immediate Need for Increased Winter Wheat Production
According to U.S. Wheat Associates, global wheat production last month fell short of total wheat consumption by 7.1 million metric tons. This deficit, combined with challenges from supply chain shortages, the war in Ukraine and natural disasters has created an urgent need for increases in U.S. wheat production.
“Farming is a hard business to continue in,” says Dave Dyson, Locus AG’s lead agronomist. “Farmers struggle with high taxes, equipment shortages and input costs—in addition to current global economic and environmental challenges. With the current price of wheat, it’s vital to get as many bushels as possible out of each acre, while also utilizing every bit of inputs and nutrients applied. That’s exactly what the Pantego line does.”
As current wheat prices see $9 per bushel, wheat growers have an opportunity to increase their revenue by an average of $46 per acre by using Pantego soil biologicals to boost yields and nutrient uptake.
Wheat Growers Transition to Crop-Specific Soil Microbes for Better Results
The impressive results are driven by Locus AG’s use of novel soil microbes, known as soil probiotics. Unlike many biologicals that utilize a standard formulation, the company’s team of experts strategically select microbials strains by crop category to maximize results.
For example, the recently launched Pantego Duo biological features two soil microbials strains vital to enhance wheat performance:
- Wickerhamomyces: Locus AG’s proprietary phosphorus-solubilizing yeast strain which expands early root development and helps gather soil nutrients
- Trichoderma: a plant-dwelling beneficial fungus that helps the wheat crop move, utilize and absorb nutrients more efficiently
By focusing on just two microbial strains in the Pantego and Pantego Duo biologicals, Locus AG products match biological strains with crop-specific desired modes of action.
“Including too many strains usually causes the microbes to compete against one another so soils are often left with the most dominant strain, instead of all the intended ones,” Dyson said. “The Pantego Duo wheat biological eliminates this challenge and will be a game changer. The combination of the Wicker[hamomyces] yeast and Trichoderma fungi is the best of both worlds.”
Third-Party Validated Wheat Data Shows Multiple Agronomic Benefits from Biologicals
Locus AG invested $1 million to gather the independent research data on the Pantego line. The studies were conducted by CROs in Illinois, Indiana, Kansas, Nebraska, Tennessee and Wisconsin—to ensure the products were tested across a variety of soils and climates.
“We know it’s not what we say that matters, it’s what the data proves,” Dyson said. “Working with multiple independent CROs allows us to gather unbiased data in several locations, so growers can be confident the results we share with them are the results they can expect on their own farms.
In addition to strong yield responses, the Pantego biologicals also enhance nutrient availability and utilization. In the studies where soil nutrients were measured, Pantego Duo increased soil nutrients by 213%. Wheat tissue nutrients also increased by up to 27%.
The novel Trichoderma yeast strain in Pantego Duo can also increase the amount of carbon sequestered per acre, making it eligible for Locus AG’s CarbonNOW carbon farming program. Growers who enroll in the program can increase their revenue even further with a guaranteed minimum payment of $12 per acre annually, and increase it with performance bonuses.
Immediate Availability of Domestic Biologicals Overcomes Supply Chain Challenges
The Pantego line of soil biologicals can be applied to any cereal crop, including those grown for grazing or as a cover crop such as cereal rye, triticale and more. They are available immediately in box-applied options for treatment at planting, to ensure microbial strains are available during germination.
“Early nutrient uptake prior to dormancy is critical for increasing wheat tillers,” Dyson said. “Farmers can increase their odds of growing higher wheat yields from the moment they plant the seed with Pantego soil biologicals.
No complicated seed treating equipment is needed, as the fine talc/graphite carrier will cling to the seed with the flick of a wrist.”
Growers can visit LocusAG.com to learn more about the Pantego line of soil biologicals and start building a customized treatment program for their cereal crops.
About Locus Agricultural Solutions
Locus Agricultural Solutions® (Locus AG) is an agtech and innovator member of the World Business Council for Sustainable Development that is helping to solve the interrelated challenges of climate change and food security. Its innovative agricultural biological technologies and globally recognized CarbonNOW® carbon farming program give farmers a new way to boost yields, profit and accelerate carbon sequestration while reducing operating costs and environmental impact. Locus AG gets its core scientific capabilities from its parent company, Locus Fermentation Solutions (Locus FS), an Ohio-based green technology company. For more information, visit LocusAG.com.