Feeding the growing global population is one of the greatest challenges facing the world. By the year 2050, our planet will be home to more than nine billion people. However, the amount of available agricultural land is declining due to increasing urbanization, higher salinity levels and soil erosion. In addition, extreme weather conditions like drought and flooding are impacting harvest quantity and quality. Bayer is the third-largest innovative agricultural input company in the world and we aim to help make the agricultural economy more productive.
At Crop Protection, we pursue the goal of identifying and developing innovative, safe and sustainable active ingredients for use as insecticides, fungicides, herbicides and crop efficiency products for foliar and soil application as well as seed treatment. These substances also undergo further development for professional applications outside of farming (Environmental Science), such as in pest control and vector control to combat diseases transmitted by mosquitoes. They are also used to control weeds and maintain sport facilities and public parks. At Seeds, meanwhile, we are conducting research and development for optimized plant traits and are developing new varieties in cotton, oilseed rape / canola, soybeans, rice, wheat and vegetables. Our scientists are working on increasing the yield potential of crops, enhancing their quality and developing new herbicide tolerance and insect resistance traits based on novel modes of action, and improving tolerance against disease and extreme weather conditions.
Crop Science maintains a global network of research and development facilities. While research is carried out centrally at a number of dedicated sites, development of crop protection products as well as plant breeding and trait development activities take place both at these sites and at numerous field testing and breeding stations in all regions. Our scientists working across the areas of seed traits, seed technology, seed breeding, agricultural chemistry and biologics closely collaborate as part of our integrated research approach. This optimally combines our complementary expertise in chemistry and biology.
To provide farmers with sustainable agronomic recommendations, we develop digital products and services that support them through the use of specific data models, among other things, in evaluating conditions in the field. Our long-term goal is to help farmers to improve their yields by providing them with tailored recommendations.
Our product pipeline contains numerous new crop protection products, seed varieties and enhanced products (life cycle management). We estimate the combined peak sales potential of products with launch dates between 2015 and 2020 to be more than €5 billion. In 2018, we launched confirmatory technical proof-of-concept field studies for five new active ingredients.