The National Corn Growers Association proudly launched a redesigned version of the National Agricultural Genotyping Center website. The site, which features more intuitive navigation and a more pleasing visual layout, offers an abundance of information on the project, the partners involved in the center and many resources for those interested in its work.
“We believe strongly in the mission of the National Agricultural Genotyping Center and hope to promote the concept, its benefits and to better explain the reason for its creation through the site,” said NCGA Research and Business Development Action Team Chair DeVonna Zeug. “In furthering the science behind improved corn varieties in a way that is available to a larger pool of researchers, NCGA ensures that the most innovative, effective solutions reach farmers’ fields in an efficient, responsible manner.”
The website clearly defines NAGC’s mission, to which Zeug referred, as translating scientific discoveries into solutions for production agriculture, food safety, bioenergy and national security. The idea for the center came about in response to a growing need for high-throughput genotyping services within U.S. agricultural research, food production and safety testing.
In order to meet this need, NCGA in partnership with Los Alamos National Laboratory and the Donald Danforth Plant Science Center supports the establishment of the national center to alleviate the inefficiencies, redundancies, bottlenecks and gaps that impede research and commercial development. The proposed NAGC will contribute to maintaining the safety of our food supply, economic stability and national security by making high-throughput genotyping available to both private and public scientists from breeders all the way to quality control and food safety scientists.
The need for such an institution came to the forefront with the 2011 release of the USDA National Agricultural Research, Education and Economics Advisory Board Report. Among other insights, the report noted that, with a lag time of 25 years from research to commercialization, the U.S. is now paying for our lack of investment in agricultural research.
Their conclusions were:
By 2050, worldwide demand for food and fiber is expected to grow by 70 percent.Funding for production agricultural research must be dramatically increased to keep American farmers competitive in future international markets and to continue being a net exporter of agricultural products.Worldwide demand for food, fiber and fuel cannot be met without a strong, well-funded U.S. production agricultural initiative.High return on public agricultural research funding is due to its focus on improving production practices, genetic improvement and new uses, and unfortunately these areas of research are receiving less funding.Agricultural funding has moved away from production agriculture.China, India and Brazil are the largest public investors in production agricultural research and these countries will be the largest competitors to U.S. agricultural products in the future.
The center will directly benefit farmers through the development of improved varieties, enhance food safety and increase the global competitiveness of the U.S. agricultural sector.