Boots on the Ground: Milliken’s Agriculture Lab Addresses Regional Needs of Latin American Farming Industry

A major player when it comes to farming, Brazil is at the center of the volatility in the world’s agriculture market. Keeping pace with a growing global population—expected to reach nearly 10 billion by 2050—presents daunting challenges for the region—and the world. Crop yields and farming efficiencies are critical in Brazil’s ability to remain the second-largest producer of soybeans and third-largest producer of corn, making it vitally important to ensure future industry growth through scalability and best practices.

At Milliken, our purpose to positively impact the world around us is infused in all our emerging innovations, and the agriculture space is no exception. With the opening of the Milliken Agricultural Lab, we took one more step in our journey to help the agriculture industry develop sustainable solutions. Ideally situated in a geographical area experiencing tremendous growth, our lab is poised to tackle the demand for higher yields and better technical efficiencies with a responsible and conscientious approach.

Our 2025 goals, as outlined in the 2018 Corporate Sustainability Report , center on product, people, and planet aspirations. Milliken’s Agricultural Lab enables our product portfolio to influence people and planet needs seen in the Latin American farming industry.

Fertilizers and seed treatments prepare the land and seeds for planting to further the long-term crop yield. Crop protectants, like herbicide and fungicides, help protect existing crops, allowing for more crops to make it to harvest time. Higher crop yield ultimately leads to more food for the population. Milliken agriculture innovations—special colorant and colored polymer additives used in fertilizers, seed treatments, and crop protectants—help make these products work better for farmers by indicating the presence of a particular material or item or by identifying a specific item or trait among options.

Farming in any region presents location-specific challenges. Pest issues coupled with varied geographic and climate needs require special attention in Brazil and her surrounding regions. But the area also provides a key cross section of farming scenarios for Milliken to further its agriculture portfolio. Our products are developed and tested in the state-of-the-art laboratory after working with and learning alongside farmers in the area. Milliken’s new laboratory helps answer the need for creative, innovative solutions with high performing, valuable products, that are also safe for farmers to use.

Milliken Agriculture products shape the way farming can create a healthier future for people and the planet. The sustainable impact of seed and chemical identifiers has global effects by lowering environmental damage and cross contamination that can lead to harmful impacts. Better fertilizers and seed treatments, of which many are made with Milliken coating and colorant innovations, ensure farmers are producing crops harmoniously with the land, as opposed to draining the land of all valuable aeration. Milliken adheres to global regulations, which may exceed local or regional standards, thus inviting greater global consciousness into the process.

Finally, but just as importantly, Milliken helps ensure critical agriculture products are economically sustainable for farmers. If farmers cannot afford these environmentally sustainable solutions, then the benefits of our work are never realized.

By addressing the value chain as a whole, Milliken Agriculture Lab helps create products that allow farmers do more with less. Beginning with local relationships, our employees are working to develop products that utilize Milliken’s global learning to specifically assist the region’s corn and soybean crops. Just as Milliken learning can be applied to this region’s needs, so too will the research and development gleaned from the lab be translated to Milliken innovations around the world—now and for generations to come.