Bayer CropScience Opens New Vegetable Breeding Research Lab

June 7, 2012

2 Min Read
Bayer CropScience Opens New Vegetable Breeding Research Lab

MONHEIM, Germany and LEUDAL, The NetherlandsBayer CropScience inaugurated its 12 million expansion its vegetable research and development center in Leudal. The existing research building, which tripled in size to 6,400 square meters, is equipped with state-of-the-art laboratories for seed technology, cell biology and molecular breeding research, as well as high-throughput biotech services.

In addition to the facility in Leudal, Bayer CropScience has a second vegetable research center in Davis, Calif. Both centers work in close alignment with 26 vegetable breeding stations worldwide and two additional high-throughput service centers in Brooks, Ore., and Bangalore, India.

During the opening ceremony, Bayer CEO Marijn Dekkers highlighted the Group's commitment to horticulture and healthy food: "We aim to provide growers and consumers across the world with answers for resource-efficient production as well as with healthy and flavorful vegetables."

Sandra E. Peterson, CEO of Bayer CropScience, added: Bayer vegetable seeds, sold worldwide under the Nunhems brand are an important cornerstone in our strategy, and we are determined to remain at the forefront of innovation in this market."

The vegetable seed business of Bayer CropScience operates under the brand name of Nunhems. Its portfolio consists of some 2,500 varieties in 28 vegetable crops, including leading varieties of carrot, cucumber, leek, lettuce, melon, onion, pepper, tomato and watermelon. With more than 1,700 employees, the unit is present in all major vegetable production areas in the world.

In conjunction with the grand opening of the new facility, Douwe Zijp, head of the Bayer CropScience vegetable seed business, and Aalt Dijkhuizen, Chairman of the Executive Board of Wageningen University and Research Center, announced a joint educational initiative for high schools across the Netherlands. Bayer CropScience and Wageningen will supply tomato seeds and detailed instructions for a hands-on genetics experiment. By sowing the seeds and evaluating the characteristics of the young plants, students are made familiar with the basic principles of plant breeding.

"The thriving vegetable industry needs the younger generations curiosity and imagination to sustain it. We hope that this school project will help to ignite a passion for plant breeding in the students," Zijp said.

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