PANUPS: Top Ten Pesticide Companies

                         P A N U P S
                   Pesticide Action Network 
                        North America
                       Updates Service

April 30, 1997

Top Ten Agrochemical Companies in 1996

The top ten agrochemical companies all showed an increase in 
both dollar and national currency sales in 1996. Monsanto had 
the highest rate of growth, with a 22.8% increase over 1995 
sales. Zeneca also showed double digit growth -- an 11.3% 
increase in dollar sales with a 9% increase in volume. Bayer 
had the smallest growth in sales (1.2%) and fell from third 
place in 1995 to sixth. After last year's merger of Ciba 
Geigy and Sandoz, the newly formed multinational corporation 
Novartis entered the ranking in first place. 

       1996 Agrochemical Sales of Top Ten Companies

  Company	Sales (US$ mill.)		% change vs. 1995
1. Novartis		4,527				+ 4.5
2. Monsanto		2,997				+ 22.8
3. Zeneca		2,630				+ 11.3
4. AgrEvo		2,493				+ 6.4
5. Du Pont		2,472				+ 6.5
6. Bayer		2,360				+ 1.2
7. Rhone-Poulenc	2,210				+ 5.7
8. DowElanco		2,000				+ 1.9
9. Cyanamid		1,989				+ 4.1
10. BASF		1,541				+ 8.4

Rhone-Poulenc and Du Pont both reported strong sales in 
Europe, Latin America and Asia. Rhone-Poulenc's sales were 
boosted by high sales of its new maize insecticide, Regent 
(fipronil), due to be launched in the U.S. next year. Much of 
the company's U.S. agrochemical business is based on the 
older carbamate insecticides such as Sevin (carbaryl), Temik 
(aldicarb) and Larvin (thiodicarb) which were acquired when 
Rhone-Poulenc bought out Union Carbide. The company is 
currently restructuring its U.S. operations to create two new 
business units which will focus on "new" and "mature" 

Monsanto's increased sales were due in part to sales of 
Roundup (glyphosate) which were allowed for use on transgenic 
herbicide-tolerant crops for the first time in 1996. Roundup 
Ready (glyphosate tolerant) soybeans were planted on over one 
million acres in the U.S. in 1996, and Monsanto predicts an 
eight to ten million acre crop this year. In addition, 
approximately 250,000 to 300,000 acres of Roundup Ready 
soybeans were planted in Argentina for the 1996/97 season. 
Since 1995, Monsanto has invested over US$200 million in 
glyphosate manufacturing technology, and plans to invest 
another US$180 million for 1997. 

While glyphosate-tolerant crops offer potential for expanded 
sales of Roundup, in the next few years most of the increase 
is expected to come from increasing adoption of "conservation 
tillage" practices in countries around the world. Monsanto 
estimates that the practice could be extended to more than 
240 million acres worldwide by 2000, up from the 185 million 
acres at present. More than 40% of the volume growth of 
Roundup in recent years has come from expanded use of 
conservation tillage practices. 

The Danish Environmental Protection Agency is currently 
investigating claims that residues of glyphosate have been 
detected in Copenhagen's drinking water at levels exceeding 
European Union limits of 0.1 milligrams per liter. According 
to the head of the Copenhagen food safety agency, residues of 
up to 0.18 milligrams per liter have been found. 

Source: Agrow: World Crop Protection News, No. 278, April 18, 
Contact: PANNA

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