The Science Beneath The Roots
Just imagine! Only a few millimetres in size, these creepy crawlies squiggle through the soil and suck sap out of plants. We can hardly imagine the amount of damage these little creatures – pests – can cause to crops, but ask a farmer, and he’ll tell you how highly dangerous these pests are. Just their presence can lead to a yield loss of up to 90%!
So, how do we counter this problem?
Pests are a menace to farmers, but thanks to science, this can be taken care of. At Monsanto, our scientists are constantly working towards finding solutions to help our farmers protect their crops.
This World Science Day for Peace and Development, we share with you the myriad ways in which science and technology – together – contribute to the production of food for us all.
Our farmers face numerous challenges on a daily basis while growing their crops. Data integration and analytics are being used to accelerate the research pipeline, to develop new technologies and products that benefit farmers globally.
One of our scientists, Dr. Mahesh Kulye uses modern biotechnological tools to assess molecules that are harmless to the environment, but toxic to pests. Over the course of 8 – 10 years, these molecules are rigorously tested in labs and greenhouses by scientists for their effectiveness against pests and for their safety to humans and the environment.
Another Monsanto scientist, Dr. Bindu Nair uses modern scientific tools of ‘genotyping’ to know which plant has the right gene combination from a tiny bit of the plant tissue. This information gives farmers improved plants and helps to meet the growing need for food.
Satheesha P. conducts molecular tests of cotton plants to analyze the biotech trait of all our products. The first biotech product in India, Bollgard® has revolutionized cotton cultivation in the country. Molecular testing is part of a product stewardship process for all our products.
Data science influences decision making for effective product testing. Scientist Dr. Prasanna Bhat tells us the long process that is involved and the number of years of data science and product testing needed to develop seeds that benefit farmers across the world.
Dr. Prasad Bellur and his team emphasize the importance of science in Sustainable Agriculture. Modern Ag tools help grow & produce more with these improved traits.
With the growing need for food security, our scientists and plant breeders work in tandem to continuously improve technologies needed for higher yields – plants that can resist insects and pests and can survive varied climatic conditions.