BioAg Alliance envisions use on half of US farmland

Monsanto and Novozymes announced their acreage goal for the next 10 years on Tuesday, with the two partners in The BioAg Alliance hoping to have their products on 250 million to 500 million acres, or up to 50 percent of all United States farmland, by 2025.

“Emerging agricultural biological technologies can supplement every farmer’s toolbox,” Robb Fraley, Monsanto’s executive vice president and chief technology officer, said. “These products complement the integrated systems approach that is necessary in modern agriculture, bringing together breeding, biotechnology and agronomic practices to improve and protect crop yields.”

At last estimate, The BioAg Alliance’s products are used on 65 million acres of United States farmland.

“Our growing world population and changing diets create a need to produce more crops from our arable land while using fewer resources. Nature’s powerful microbes can help us achieve that goal,” Thomas Videbæk, Novozymes'  executive vice president and head of business development, said. “The science is complex, but the more we learn, the better we understand the importance of a healthy microbial community in the soil and around plants.”

In a tablespoon of soil there are approximately 50 billion microbes, and new methods of identification are helping scientists discover which ones are most beneficial to farmers. Each microbe product counts as another product towards the target, so even if a product is used on the same acreage of farmland, it will count towards the total target.

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