Iowa fought to keep Corteva | Corridor Industry News
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Iowa fought to keep Corteva. Now, the company is helping farmers battle climate change

On a flight to Wilmington, Delaware, Johnston Mayor Paula Dierenfeld and Iowa Economic Development Authority Director Debi Durham kept running through their pitch.

It was 2016, and they needed to convince executives with DowDuPont that their storied Pioneer seed business — an agricultural powerhouse that employed about 2,600 Iowans and had invested $165 million in offices, laboratories and greenhouses in Johnston — should remain in Iowa.

Dierenfeld feared Johnston could lose Pioneer, the nation’s first hybrid seed company, founded in the city nearly 100 years ago. “It was a very big threat,” Dierenfeld says, adding, she “didn’t want to imagine" Johnston without Pioneer.

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Originally published May 2024 by the Des Moines Register.

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