$45 billion with 2.9% annual growth
In 2007, herbicides accounted for 39% of the world pesticide sales, while insecticides accounted for 28% and fungicides for 23%.
$10.7 billion with 2.6% annual growth
In 2007, US herbicides accounted for 47% of the US pesticide sales, while insecticides accounted for 35% and fungicides for 11%. Furthermore, that year US accounted for 32% of the world pesticide market.
Agricultural market (80% of total): Glyphosate (180-185 mil lbs, sales doubled between 2001 and 2007), Atrazine (73-78 mil lbs), Metam Sodium (50-55 mil lbs), S-Metolachlor, Acetochlor, Dichloropropene, 2,4-D
Home and Garden (8% of total): 2,4-D, Glyphosate, Carbaryl, MCPP, Pendimethalin
Industry/Commercial/Government (12% of total): 2,4-D, Glyphosate, Chlorothalonil
Top ten agrochemical companies by share of the total annual sales in 2007
Total $34,396m - 89% of total sales in 2007
Source: Agrow World Crop Protection News, August 2008
Pesticides are used in agriculture to reduce the loss of crop yield. The most common type of pesticides are herbicides, followed by the insecticides and fungicides. Pesticides account for around 3% ($7.9 billion) of total farm expenditures. However, there are several serious problems with the use of chemical pesticides such as: resistance, human toxicity, and environmental damage. In fact, at least 14 weeds have reportedly acquired resistance to glyphosate, one of the most commonly used herbicides. Farmers are now turning to the older products such as 2,4-D and dicamba, while the market leaders are searching for new solutions. There is also a growing concern over the use of chemicals in agriculture due to their harmful effects on human health and the natural environment. Despite the trends in organic farming, the pesticide market will continue to grow as the demand for food is on the rise due to the growing global population. In addition, there is a trend in growing biofuel crops, which require more pesticides. However, to reduce the negative impact of chemical agents on the environment and human health, market leaders are developing new greener pesticide options.
The company owns the exclusive commercial rights to a proprietary invention that could be used insecticides. This invention, which provides a method of inhibiting RNA silencing mediated viral immunity in insects, is currently being evaluated for its anti-pest properties. These insecticides would address several issues facing the currently available products. In particular, they could be used on a variety of insects, they have lower undesirable environmental impact and they lack phototoxicity. Furthermore, they could have higher effectiveness due to the smaller insect resistance.