Flash forward to the late 1920’s. DEKALB, as it was now known, had been working hard to bring more consistent, high-quality corn seed to farmers to help mitigate against age old uncertainties like weather, weeds, pests and disease. The result was the first affordable hybrid corn. The spread of that higher-yielding corn helped farmers as the Great Depression gripped North America, through the 1930’s.
In 1936 the “winged ear” icon made its first appearance in DEKALB print ads. It reflects the promise of better seed to deliver bigger yields and bigger profits. In other words, with DEKALB your mortgage would fly off your farm. By 1940, DEKALB was the leading seed corn company in the U.S. and the DEKALB winged ear icon was recognized as the symbol of corn innovation and quality.
The introduction of revolutionary single-cross technology in the early 1960s increased corn yields for farmers and quickly led to an industry-leading sales volume for the company. DEKALB responded with increased investment in new facilities for research, breeding and production and, by the 1990s, was developing technologies including B.t. insect-resistant corn, high-oil corn and IMI corn. In fact, in 1998, DEKALB was the first company to launch Roundup Ready® corn.
In 2019 DEKALB became part of the Bayer family as part of the Monsanto acquisition. Bayer can’t wait to add to the DEKALB story as it continues to champion the spirit of technology and innovation that began in DeKalb county, Illinois, way back in 1912.