Bayer acquires Ukrainian wheat breeding programs

Bayer CropScience has announced the acquisition of the wheat breeding programs from two Ukrainian breeding companies, SORT and EUROSORT, based in Mironivka close to the capital Kiev.

With this agreement, Bayer CropScience will gain access to outstanding wheat lines with excellent winter hardiness and drought tolerance. Bayer CropScience has already established wheat-breeding programs at the premises of the renowned Mironivka-Institute. Financial details were not disclosed.

“Wheat is a strategic crop for Bayer CropScience and as part of its investment plans the company is putting significant resources into research and development to raise productivity of wheat cropping. The acquisition of this germplasm pool will significantly enhance our wheat breeding efforts globally,” said Hartmut van Lengerich, Head of Crop Strategy Cereals, Oilseeds & Sugar Beet at Bayer CropScience.

“Our objective is to become the partner of choice to wheat growers and the wheat industry and to offer superior integrated solutions to improve sustainable cereal production. Our first in class varieties will complement our already leading portfolio of crop protection, seed treatment and service solutions allowing us to serve wheat growers from seed to harvest”, stated van Lengerich.

With about 25 percent of the global agricultural land under wheat cultivation, it is the largest cereal crop in terms of acreage and one of the world’s most important staple foods. Wheat is the second most-produced cereal crop after corn with more than 650 million tons produced every year. Wheat productivity is increasing at less than 1 percent annually, while the annual global demand is growing at approximately double that percentage. Main wheat producing regions are Australia, the Black Sea Region, China, the EU, India and North America.

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