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Bayer CropScience to consolidate European Plant Biotechnology Research in Ghent


Realignment of biotech research activities:

Focus to lie on stress tolerance, increasing yields and optimized quality traits in plants in future

Monheim – Bayer CropScience AG intends to consolidate its European research activities in the field of plant biotechnology at its Innovation Center in Ghent, Belgium and further extend its activities in the main research fields of stress tolerance and increasing yields. The BioScience (Seed & Traits) division’s share of Bayer CropScience’s total research and development expenditure is planned to increase from 20 percent at present to 25 percent in 2012. In the course of consolidating the main research fields at BioScience, Bayer CropScience has decided to no longer pursue its research into nutrition specialty ingredients at its site in Potsdam, Germany in future.

Bayer CropScience intends to realign its plant biotechnology research and development activities to more clearly identify new agronomic properties and qualitative plant traits, in order to better address major trends in global agriculture such as increasing demand for food, feed, fibers and renewable raw materials. The fields of stress tolerance and increased yields are crucial elements for the company’s future market success. Bayer CropScience also wants to further develop its quality plant trait research activities, thus building on its successful business platform in cotton, canola, rice and vegetable seeds. The research program in these four key crops covers key quality traits such as the development of new canola profiles, improved tomato processing characteristics and improved fiber quality on the basis of new cotton varieties.

In the course of realigning its plant biotechnology research activities, Bayer CropScience has decided to no longer pursue its activities in nutrition specialty ingredients, which is one of the main assignments of the research institute in Potsdam. The company will make every effort to offer all employees at the Potsdam site new assignments at the Innovation Center in Ghent and at Bayer CropScience’s other research sites.

The Seeds & Traits business – the business with seeds and crops that have been genetically modified to optimize their properties – is of growing importance for the company. With the aid of plant biotechnology and modern breeding methods the company is able to introduce improvements into crop plants which have the potential to increase the quantity and quality of foodstuffs, feeds and fibers for the benefit of farmers, consumers, industry and the environment. Bayer CropScience plans to invest some EUR 750 million in the development of new solutions in its Seeds & Traits business from 2008 to 2012. In addition to the planned consolidation of the European biotech research activities in Ghent, the company also intends to further extend its research and development capacities in North America, the world’s most important market for commercial use of plant biotechnology.

About Bayer CropScience
Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, nutrition and high-tech materials. Bayer CropScience AG, a subsidiary of Bayer AG with annual sales of about EUR 6.4 billion (2008), is one of the world’s leading innovative crop science companies in the areas of crop protection, non-agricultural pest control, seeds and plant biotechnology. The company offers an outstanding range of products and extensive service backup for modern, sustainable agriculture and for non-agricultural applications. Bayer CropScience has a global workforce of more than 18,000 and is represented in more than 120 countries. This and further news is available at:

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This release may contain forward-looking statements based on current assumptions and forecasts made by Bayer Group or subgroup management. Various known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to material differences between the actual future results, financial situation, development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These factors include those discussed in Bayer’s public reports which are available on the Bayer website at The company assumes no liability whatsoever to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events or developments.


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