News 1 commentlast update:6 Aug 2012

Industry paper to help revive wheat market

A new US industry paper "The Case for Biotech Wheat" says biotech will help ensure adequate wheat supplies by compensating for the loss of wheat acres in America.

The eight-page paper outlines the competitiveness problem facing global wheat production and the wheat industry itself, which is increasingly vulnerable to short-term supply shocks and a long-term cycle of decline.
The paper explains why this matters for the entire food chain - wheat growers, wheat users at home and abroad, and consumers in the industrialized and developing worlds.
Organizations collaborating on the paper included the National Association of Wheat Growers, US Wheat Associates, the North American Millers’ Association, the Independent Bakers Association and the Wheat Foods Council.
The analysis concludes that the rapid adoption of biotechnology traits in other crops produced around the world and grower testimonials in support of these traits lend credence to the idea that biotechnology can make a significant contribution.
Non-biotech issue
The authors also devote significant space to their commitment to choice for consumers who wish to procure non-GM wheat and wheat products and for producers who choose to meet this demand.
Wheat acres have been declining in the US for three decades, and yield growth and net returns per acre for wheat have consistently lagged behind corn and soybeans over the past decade.
Many industry organizations are now supporting a goal of the National Association of Wheat Growers to increase national average wheat yields 20% from 2008 to 2018 through work on both biotechnology and non-biotechnology efforts.
The paper “The Case for Biotech Wheat” can be downloaded here.

Dick Ziggers

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