Hebei Lansheng Biotech Co., Ltd. ShangHai Yuelian Biotech Co., Ltd.

Bayer CropScience to expand food chain partnership in Asiaqrcode

Mar. 17, 2016

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Mar. 17, 2016
India is already the leading partner in a Bayer CropScience sustainable agriculture facilitation program, and now the German company aims to expand its footprint in China.
During Fruit Logistica in Berlin last month, the company's food chain management head Silke Friebe told www.freshfruitportal.com food chain partnerships focused on integrated crop solutions, ranging from pesticides to biologics to water management.
"In general it's in many sustainability topics but also topics like safe use, the disposal of empty containers, certification - one big topic that is currently on our radar is the need to achieve GlobalG.A.P. or other certifications, which in many cases is a challenge for the farmers," Friebe said.
"For this we have developed training programs – they are running that deal combining farmers big and small with good training material on how to achieve local certifications, and that’s the first step to really move on to higher certifications.
"We have a global presence. We're active in almost every country in the world – I think that’s the biggest benefit. Wherever you are we can probably help you out with people in the field. We can provide expertise in many different crops, but also in many different topics."
In the case of India, Friebe said Bayer would often work with a lot of small farmers.
"Our biggest country is India, and that is very strongly small grower-focused, so we work with people who really know the regions of the country and organize field days in order to bring them all together," she said.
"There we can provide the biggest benefit in terms of the safe use of product – the training needs, the optimization use is much higher when compared to a country like Germany where the mechanization is high.
"They strongly increase their return on investment, and simply by being connected to the chain they can charge higher prices, so it’s definitely a step into security."
Similar principles could be applied to China, in Freibe's view.
Bayer CropScience already has a range of projects in the country including an apple project between Golden Wing Mau and Walmart, an apple project with Haisheng Group, a vegetable project with Star Farm and Metro, an orange juice program with EMBC and government authorities, a vegetable project with local farmers and the government in China's north, and a tomato processing partnership with COFCO.
However, this is only a glimpse of the food chain partnership's potential in China.
"There’s a lot of potential in China, very clearly, but at the moment our footprint is still in the growth process," Friebe said.
"We have to see how do we really reach the growers, how do we make the connection to the chain; ideally what we’ll try to do there is go jointly with the food chain partners and develop concepts, and help the grower base."
In terms of other issues Bayer CropScience works on, Friebe highlighted 30% annual growth in the biologics space, albeit from a low base, and pointed to concerns about NGO pressure on retailers to restrict certain active ingredients.
"The restrictions that we’re seeing is a very dangerous development," she said.
"That's a disaster because the farmers don’t have that product available anymore, they have trouble producing. What it ultimately does is it limits the variety of products you have in the market, and you create resistance because farmers will sometimes apply an old product more and more.
"Other things like glyphosate – the toxicology profile is wonderful, why would you want to remove that? I think it’s good to look at it with good eyesight and say where does it make sense and where is it actually harming the whole process in the end?"


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