There’s a new market cropping up for venture capitalists: data-loving farmers

Alex Whitebrook/ August 14, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Agriculture technology (also known as agtech) is an emerging market connecting new technologies with farming practices. Technology investors are discovering a new and largely untapped market: farmers in heartland America eager to fly drones, employ robots and crunch big data to boost their business. In 2017, tech startups in the agriculture sphere raised $670 million to develop software management, big

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PANHANDLE PERSPECTIVE: Wheat protein levels

Alex Whitebrook/ August 13, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

A multi-disciplinary team of University of Nebraska-Lincoln researchers will conduct a two-year study to see how soil nitrogen levels affect protein levels in the grain that comes from Nebraska wheat fields. The team hopes to evaluate how grain quality, yield and field stands are affected by nitrogen fertilizer rates and application timing. The trials will be conducted across the state

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Biotechnology seeks to engineer crops with high economic value

Alex Whitebrook/ August 13, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Dr Richard Ampadu-Ameyaw, a Senior Scientist at Science and Technology Policy Research Institute (STEPRI) has stated that biotechnology seeks to engineer only crops found to have high economic value but are low yielding. “Biotechnology was therefore not targeted at engineering every crop in the system, but rather only those of high economic value”, he said, in an attempt to dismiss

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Gene-editing startups ignite the next ‘Frankenfood’ fight

Alex Whitebrook/ August 10, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

In a suburban Minneapolis laboratory, a tiny company that has never turned a profit is poised to beat the world’s biggest agriculture firms to market with the next potential breakthrough in genetic engineering – a crop with “edited” DNA. A research scientist examines a soybean plantlet in New Brighton, Minnesota, U.S., November 1, 2016. Courtesy Calyxt/Handout via REUTERS Calyxt Inc,

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Helping plants remove natural toxins could boost crop yields by 47%

Alex Whitebrook/ August 9, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Can you imagine the entire population of the United States, Canada, Mexico, Brazil, the United Kingdom and France going hungry? You don’t need to imagine. That is exactly what happens every day when an estimated 815 million people around the globe go hungry. Recent reports suggest that by the time children born today reach their thirties, the planet must increase food production by at least

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Cotton “Kryptonite” for Weed Resistance

Alex Whitebrook/ August 8, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Scientists at Texas A&M University are hopeful they’ve developed the kryptonite for what’s been a losing battle against herbicide-resistant weeds now choking cotton fields across the southern U.S. If it works as well in the San Angelo test field as it has in a campus greenhouse, the technology could prove revolutionary to a crop that in some regions has become

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SoftBank-Backed Vertical Farm Is Opening Middle Eastern Facility

Alex Whitebrook/ August 8, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

A vertical-farming startup backed by Masayoshi Son’s Vision Fund is building its first overseas outpost — in the United Arab Emirates. Plenty Inc. plans to start selling locally grown produce, including kale and other leafy greens, to communities in Abu Dhabi and Dubai early next year. The startup, which has a farm in its hometown of San Francisco, says the company’s indoor

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Innovative Approach to Breeding Could Mean Higher Yields and Better Crops

Alex Whitebrook/ August 7, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Agricultural Research Service (ARS) scientists in Albany, California, have found a way to streamline the process that scientists use to insert multiple genes into a crop plant, developing a reliable method that will make it easier to breed a variety of crops with vastly improved traits. The technology is expected to speed up the process for developing new varieties of

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GM Crop Ruling Shows Why the EU’s Laws Are Wholly Inadequate

Alex Whitebrook/ August 6, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

The European Court of Justice has made an important ruling on genetically modified crops. Since 2003, new crop varieties produced by genetic modification have had to be assessed for their risks to the environment and human and animal health before they can be farmed in the European Union. The court has now decided that genetic modification includes any technique that induces genetic changes

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Nation’s drones enabling UK farmers to reap rich dividends

Alex Whitebrook/ August 3, 2018/ News/ 0 comments

Farming drones from China may soon be buzzing across British fields as a result of a new partnership between Chinese agricultural technology company XAG and Harper Adams University in the United Kingdom. XAG and Harper Adams have formed an academic and research partnership that will focus on the development of agricultural technology, including drones that spray crops and ground-based robots

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