Plant Science Garden with genetically improved plants in Üplingen will not open this year

Üplingen, May 9, 2012 – The Plant Science Garden in Üplingen, Saxony-Anhalt, which has been visited by thousands interested in genetically modified plants in the past few years, will not open this year. The reasons for this are the restrictive political conditions and the destruction of field trial plots in Germany. This situation, which has already led to the loss of a large part from the scientific and economic resources in this future-oriented industry, has made it not practical to continue showing the latest worldwide developments in modern plant breeding to the public.

“We had again planned to showcase various international research projects undertaken by universities, research facilities and industry under field conditions,” said Kerstin Schmidt, managing director of BioTechFarm. “However, the lack of newly developed genetically modified plants has severely restricted our ability to show the latest innovations. We have therefore decided not to have the Plant Science Garden this year,” continued Schmidt. Last year some of the trials were destroyed and the guards at the site violently attacked.

BioTechFarm, operator of the Plant Science Garden in Üplingen, firmly believes that plant biotechnology is one of the key technologies of the 21st Century. While plant biotechnology has been widely adopted worldwide with close to 17 million farmers growing genetically improved crops on 160 million hectares in 2011, there is still a lack of general acceptance in Germany and much of Europe. If conditions for trials and the cultivation of genetically modified plants in Europe do not improve, the value created from this industry will remain exclusively outside of Europe. “Germany is on the way to forfeiting its innovative strength in this future-oriented area,” Schmidt stressed.

Üplingen will still be a hub for modern plant breeding through the organization of field trials for industry as well as research organizations, and will continue to host public events.

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Experience modern plant breeding

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