Seeds & Traits
Transparency & Plant Breeding
Most new plant varieties are bred by crossing existing varieties to create new genetic combinations.
When people have questions about our products, we want them to get the answers they need. We have already made safety information about our crop protection and genetically modified crop products available and plan to expand this effort to include information relevant to our seed products improved through plant breeding as well. It’s understandable that as the ag innovation community finds new ways to improve crops, additional conversation and access to credible information is necessary – and as a developer, we’ll certainly do our part in this dialogue.
Regulatory authorities around the globe hold seed developers accountable for the safety of all new plant varieties placed on the market. This is true regardless of the technology used in the product’s development, including plant breeding. Regulators have long understood and trusted the safety of products derived from plant breeding, which involves extensive trialing and an intense selection process to deliver new crop varieties that are safe to grow and consume.
Importantly, when plant breeders select existing varieties to cross, they do so knowing a great deal of information about each plant’s background, including its long history of safe use. Plant breeders rigorously test new varieties for a broad range of characteristics and quality standards throughout the product development process. These characteristics range from those that consumers desire to those that help farmers produce a successful crop. For consumers, taste, color, and texture are key. For farmers, the focus is on yield, pest resistance and consistency of performance in diverse field environments. Varieties are typically evaluated in multiple environments over several years to ensure consistency of performance. The scrutiny that scientists routinely apply to the development of new varieties through plant breeding is the foundation for our safe, nutritious and diverse food supply.
Bayer’s plant breeding program is widely regarded as one of the most robust and data-driven programs in the world. Assessing our seed products for safety, quality and intended features is part of our standard research and development process to bring new plant varieties to the market. In many cases, our own standards surpass those of established national policies and regulations out of our commitment to environmental sustainability and exceeding customer expectations.