spraying© Tim Scrivener

The new DowDuPont agrochemicals and seeds company is to be called Corteva Agriscience, following the $130bn merger of US chemicals giants Dow and DuPont last year.

The merger brought together two of the US’s biggest industrial organisations, and the new firm is now being split into three focused separately-listed companies. DowDuPont’s materials science company is to be called Dow; the speciality products firm will be named DuPont.

The agriculture company is expected to separated from the rest of DowDuPont by 1 June 2019.

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In the UK the move will bring together Dow’s portfolio, including herbicides such as Kerb, Unite and Broadway Star, and DuPont products such as Vertisan fungicide and Pioneer oilseed rape varieties.

The merger comes after a spate of takeover activity, with ChemChina buying Syngenta in May 2017 for $43bn, and Bayer awaiting full clearance of its planned takeover of Monsanto for $66bn.

All these groups are combining to pool resources as their growth has slowed because of lower commodity prices and as growers cut back on inputs.

Farmers have concerns that these much larger companies could increase prices, cut choice and reduce innovation.