Video: Plant Breeding Media Tour in Davis and Woodland, California

This “Plant Breeding Media Tour” video features academic and industry breeders and seed producers. From UC Davis, Ph.D. students Kimberly Gibson (bean breeding) and Saarah Kuzay are featured, along with Professor Kent Bradford, director of the Seed Biotechnology Center (SBC) at UC Davis, and Allen Van Deynze, research director of the SBC. Bradford addresses the importance of UC Davis serving the agricultural industries, including the seed industry.

The participants visited the Seed Biotechnology Center at UC Davis, the UC Davis research fields, and two breeding facilities — the HM Clause research station in Davis, California, and Monsanto/Seminis in Woodland, California.

Alyson Thornton, a plant pathologist, and Bill Copes, a melon breeder — both at HM Clause — address the importance of educating the general public about what it takes to put food on the table, and the length of time it takes to develop new varieties.

John Purcell, global R&D lead for Monsanto Vegetables, addresses new vegetable varieties and the importance of producing nutritious vegetables that also perform well for farmers. Purcell noted that half of the U.S. vegetables come from California, and it all starts from seed.

Debbie Arrington, a garden writer for the Sacramento Bee, describes the tour as “an Oh, Wow! moment,” in which many new varieties of fruits and vegetables are seen by the media participants.

The tour was hosted by the American Seed Trade Association (with president and CEO Andrew LaVigne leading the tour), the California Seed Association, and the National Garden Bureau. Attending the tour were 35 to 40 media from the food and gardening industries, writers for newspapers and mass media throughout California and from Seattle, along with bloggers who write about the gardening and food communities.

(Article by Ann Filmer, Dept. of Plant Sciences, UC Davis)

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.