Publication •  24/02/2022

Results from the Pioneer Maize PACTS trials show dent hybrid delivers better-performing forage

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Results from the 2021 Pioneer Accurate Crop Testing System (PACTS®) trials show Pioneer’s very early maturity dent hybrid P7034 continues to top the list for relative rumen degradable starch.

Bred specifically for UK conditions, the dent-type hybrid P7034 produces silage with a very high starch content and yield. This starch is easier for rumen bacteria to degrade meaning more energy is available to livestock.

Norfolk farmer Simon Dann and his son Alex run a 400-cow high-yielding herd, growing 430 acres of maize for both forage and combining.

“Over the last couple of years, we’ve driven milk yields up from an average of 8,400 litres to 12,100 litres,” says Simon. “Producing high-quality forage on farm, including maize, played an important role in this change.

“One maize variety we have been particularly impressed with is P7034. We were looking for a high-starch variety to support milk yields, which it certainly delivers on, but we’ve also been impressed with its consistency and yields.”

Simon took part in the PACTS® trials for the first time last year. The annual trials take place across the UK on both favourable and less favourable sites, the comprehensive results helping farmers identify hybrids best suited to their farm system and conditions.

“Although we’ve been growing maize for 25 years, being involved in the PACTS® trials is something we’ve always wanted to do,” explains Simon.  “It’s a fantastic opportunity to learn more about the latest developments, and test whether what we are growing commercially is right for our farm.

“We’ve found it interesting to see there can be quite substantial regional variation in the performance of different varieties. It’s definitely taught us to look more carefully at how each variety performs in the conditions we experience on our farm.”

Talking about the 2021 PACTS® trials, Corteva’s Andy Stainthorpe said: “We’re really pleased to see P7034 once again performed well for rumen starch degradability. Testing for relative rumen degradable starch is unique to the PACTS® trials and demonstrates the benefits dent varieties can bring to livestock farmers.”

The PACTS® trials also provide an opportunity to explore the latest developments in maize production, explains Andy.

“During the 2021 trials we tested Takla, a new alternative product to the seed treatment Korit,” says Andy. “Initial results show promising performance across PACTS® trial sites, and we’ll continue to monitor its performance.”

If you are interested in trying a Pioneer hybrid for the first time, please apply through the ‘Test the Best’ scheme, contact

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