INTRODUCING BAYER ENVIRONMENTAL SCIENCE

As of June 4, 2002, the acquisition of Aventis CropScience by Bayer AG became official, having received the blessings of government regulators.

The result is Bayer CropScience, which consists of three business groups: Crop Protection, Bio Science and Environmental Science. The Environmental Science group (now headed by Josh Weeks, formerly head of Chipco Professional Products) consists of a Consumer Products division and a Professional Products division.

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Combining the two businesses yields an impressive line of products used by golf and green industry professionals. However, Federal Trade Commission approval stipulated divestiture of two products: acetamiprid and fipronil. Acetamiprid is a promising insecticide chemically related to imidacloprid, widely used as Bayer's Merit insecticide, among other products. Fipronil is the active ingredient in Chipco's mole cricket and fireant products (Chipco Choice and Chipco FireStar), among others. It is possible that Bayer, through licensing agreements, will be able to continue marketing fipronil products in the United States, though such details have not yet been worked out.

This acquisition caps a long series of deals involving agrochemical manufacturers. In recent years, Dow AgroSciences has acquired Rohm and Haas; Novartis (itself a product of the merger of Ciba and Sandoz) merged with Zeneca to form Syngenta; and BASF acquired American Cyanamid. Aventis was the result of AgrEvo merging with Rhone Poulenc (Chipco).

The new Web site for Bayer is www.BayerES.com.

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