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Africa Farmers: Masaiti District Farmer Named Pioneer “Best Farmer”

20 April 2012 – CHISAMBA, Zambia - DuPont business Pioneer Hi-Bred held a national field day in Chisamba, Chibombo District today, commemorated by the special presence of the Honorable Emmanuel Chenda, Zambia Minister of Agriculture and Livestock, and by the naming of Elisha Lewanika of Masaiti District, Copperbelt Province, as Zambia’s “Best Farmer.” Pioneer hosted the field day to recognize farmers who participated in Zambia’s Farmer Input Support Program (FISP) and elected to measure their overall farm management skills in Pioneer’s complimentary “Best Farmer Competition.”

“The Zambian government is committed to farmer support programs such as FISP that help our growers to improve their yields,” said Chenda. “I’m pleased that we can partner with DuPont to educate farmers on improved management methods and to offer high-quality hybrid seeds from Pioneer.”

To participate in the Best Farmer Competition, farmers must have received a bag of Pioneer® brand hybrid maize seed through the FISP program and have elected to be judged against other participating farmers at the district and provincial level on: yield, crop management and rotation, proper use of herbicides and fertilizer, record keeping, and general upkeep of the farm homestead. The competition was judged by Ministry of Agriculture and Livestock Extension staff and Pioneer agronomists.

“We are excited to work with the Zambia Ag Ministry on this important program to educate farmers on methods to improve their individual farm productivity, including through the use of quality seed,” said Worede Woldemariam, senior business manager – Pioneer East and South Central Africa. “Close to 900 metric tons of high-yielding Pioneer® brand hybrid seed was sampled by farmers throughout Zambia through the FISP and each new ton of maize produced is a step toward greater food security in our rural communities.”

Nearly 90,000 farmers were eligible to participate in the Pioneer Best Farmer Competition, which was designed to compliment government efforts in extension and input provision. “We congratulate Elisha Lewanika on his excellent farm management skills,” said Munyaradzi Mutsvairo, operations manager – Pioneer Zambia. “Lewanika planted Pioneer hybrid 30G19 in the appropriate spring time period, applied sufficient basal and topdressing fertilizers, properly used herbicides to control weeds and maintained an immaculate homestead and facilities for his herd of cattle at the Mipundu Camp, Masaiti.”

The field day included a tour of Pioneer maize demonstration plots with professional Pioneer agronomists offering farm management advice to the more than 250 attendees. Pioneer is committed to helping farmers in Zambia and throughout the world to increase their agricultural productivity and profitability.

For more information about Pioneer® brand seed products, visit www.pioneer.com or contact a local Pioneer sales professional: Munyaradzi Mutsvairo at Head Office on 0978 777 063, Henry Kamwale for Coppperbelt/Central Provinces on 0976582630, Paul Kapapula for Southern Province on 0977582630, Henry Mutelo-Eastern Province on 0977 319201, or Dennson Siame, Lusaka Province on 0977345 181. Pioneer Hi-Bred, a DuPont business headquartered in Des Moines, Iowa, is the world’s leading developer and supplier of advanced plant genetics, providing high-quality seeds to farmers in more than 90 countries. Pioneer provides agronomic support and services to help increase farmer productivity and profitability and strives to develop sustainable agricultural systems for people everywhere. Science with Service Delivering Success™.

DuPont (NYSE: DD) has been bringing world-class science and engineering to the global marketplace in the form of innovative products, materials, and services since 1802. The company believes that by collaborating with customers, governments, NGOs, and thought leaders we can help find solutions to such global challenges as providing enough healthy food for people everywhere, decreasing dependence on fossil fuels, and protecting life and the environment. For additional information about DuPont and its commitment to inclusive innovation, please visit www.dupont.com.