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  • By Lynda Kiernan-Stone, Global AgInvesting Media

Monsanto Opens State-of-the-Art Wheat Technology Center in Idaho

Approximately 100 academic experts, wheat growers, and industry and government officials attended the official opening of Monsanto’s new state-of-the-art Wheat Technology Center in Filer, Idaho.

The center, which will be located in the company’s Seminis Vegetable Seed Co. building in Filer, will be Monsanto’s main wheat breeding facility in the U.S. and will be used to conduct research and to develop new wheat cultivars using traditional cross-breeding methods as well as more advanced technologies including DNA analysis to accelerate the process.

The Wheat Technology Center will include a wheat seed cleaning facility, seed storage and trial preparation sites, and two new greenhouses totaling 14,000 square feet in area for growing and laboratory space.

Monsanto employs 30 employees under its wheat breeding program, and the new Idaho facility will employ two thirds of the total workforce. The remaining workers will continue to manage test plots in Texas, Kansas, and North Dakota.

It is widely known that over the years Monsanto has been at the center of worldwide controversy over its development of genetically modified seeds, however Kristin Schneider, leader of Monsanto’s global wheat breeding program has stated that no genetic modification technology will be used at the center.

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