Developments such as climate change, population growth or changing dietary preferences create new challenges and a dynamic perspective for the agricultural sector. The breeding of targeted crop varieties offers invaluable opportunities in this context. Plant breeding can enhance crop yields (area productivity), quality traits (e.g. higher micronutrient content) as well as agronomic characteristics and an improved adaptation to local conditions (e.g. increased resistance to pest infections). New breeds can allow for a cultivation with less water and other inputs. This helps achieving food and energy security along with environmental protection and sustainability.
Plant breeding is – along with other technological innovations – a major driver for agricultural productivity. Hence, plant breeding has not only a positive effect on the agricultural sector but also the whole society and economy along with the environment. In our studies, we evaluate this in a quantitative and qualitative manner. One of our methods allows to extrapolate the sector’s economic, social and environmental benefits to its upstream and downstream industries as well as the national, European and global level. Additionally, we analyze relevant politics and regulations, such as the Nagoya Protocol, as well as private and public stakeholders.