Timeline of crop protection advances

Maximizing potential Farmer family standing in their wheat field at sunset - Timeline of crop protection advances

Crop protection advancing

Crop protection continues to advance to help farmers maximize the potential of land, seed and crop inputs with less environmental impact.

Regulatory approvals A honey bee on a green ear of wheat. Close-up. Summer. Pollination. Honeybee. - Timeline of crop protection advances

Crossing Regulatory Hurdles

To meet regulatory approval around the world, today’s crop protection products must show they control pests with as little impact on the environment as possible.

New modes of action Grape Harvest - Timeline of crop protection advances

Reduced resistance risks

Crop protection products feature new modes of action that reduce resistance risks and targeted profiles that reduce impact on beneficial organisms like pollinators.

Less herbicide use bright color ladybug beetle also called Coccinellidae on tomato plat leaf - Timeline of crop protection advances

Decline in use rates

Active ingredient use rates decline. Now, farmers use 97% less herbicide active ingredients to protect against weeds than they used to.1

Better profiles Organic food - Timeline of crop protection advances

Increase in product effectiveness

Many of the most widely used pesticides of the 1960s are replaced with products that are more effective against pests and have better environmental and human health profiles.

Period of discovery Vineyard - Timeline of crop protection advances

Revolutionizing control

A ground-breaking period of discovery begins, revolutionizing control of disease, insects and weeds in crops.

Rise in productivity Green field - aerial view - Timeline of crop protection advances

Green Revolution

The Green Revolution introduces new chemistry-based pesticides which result in significant improvements in farm productivity.

Pest control Sewing Machine Factory. Date: 1876 - Timeline of crop protection advances

Industrial Revolution

Farmers experiment with byproducts of the Industrial Revolution, including coal tar, to control pests. These options are not very effective or environmentally friendly.

Weed control Reaping Grain the 14th Century, vintage illustration - Timeline of crop protection advances

Cultivation methods

Farmers begin controlling weeds with cultivation methods, such as optimizing plant spacing. Weeds and insects are removed by hand.

300 B.C.
Climate impact Bas-relief of an ancient Roman farmer throwing seeds on the ground. In the the public Baths of Diocletian in Rome, Italy. It was built from 298 to 306

Insect management

Farmers begin learning about the impact of climate and temperature on insect populations and look for ways to time their planting to avoid insect infestation.

500 B.C.
Farming in China Ancient China. Tea ceremony. Traditional Chinese paintings. Tradition and culture of Asia. Farmers work in rice field. Oriental people. Classic wall drawing. Murals and watercolor asian style

Use of predatory ants

Chinese farmers use predatory ants to protect their citrus crops.

2500 B.C.
First practice Sumerian artifact - Timeline of crop protection advances

The first record of crop protection

Ancient Sumerians leave the first record of practicing crop protection. They use sulfur compounds to control insects, a practice that’s still used in some organic farming.

1 “Evolution of the Crop Protection Industry since 1960.” Phillips McDougall. November 2018. http://www.croplifeasia.org/resource/evolution-crop-protection-industry-since-1960/