Manuel Bravo
President And Director General
Monsanto
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View from the Top

Technology and Sustainable Models of Agribusiness

Mon, 05/21/2018 - 10:25

Q: Monsanto is now part of Germany’s Bayer. How will this merger impact the agricultural industry in Mexico?
A: Bayer and Monsanto, which is now part of Bayer’s crop science division, hope to introduce more innovation and technology to the Mexican agribusiness sector to help the country face the alimentary challenges of the future. This acquisition will redirect investment in a more efficient way. Once the integration is consolidated, we will begin to provide faster and better opportunities in digital agriculture, conventional breeding, biological, biotechnological and agrochemical products.
Q: How does Monsanto provide added value to agricultural producers in Mexico?
A: Every year, Monsanto invests US$1.5 billion in R&D globally. Even after establishing our venture with Bayer, investment will continue and possibly increase to accelerate the production of innovative products. About 50 percent of our resources are allocated to conventional breeding and the rest to the development of our other four innovation platforms, including digital agriculture. Monsanto manages a Big Data platform in other parts of the world, such as Brazil, Ukraine and the US, that helps improve the efficiency of the crops of local producers. We believe that our know-how and our technology are vital to boost Mexico’s agribusiness industry through quality, speed and innovation.
Q: How can digital tools and Big Data benefit agricultural development in Mexico?
A: The potential of Big Data in agriculture lies in providing information that helps farmers make better decisions regarding the productive cycle of their crops. Monsanto wants to help farmers with seed selection according to the conditions of the soil, water availability and agronomic practices related to agricultural production. The technologies we use, such as soil sensors and satellite images, create valuable personalized and up-to-date information for the producer that translates to opportunities for improvement regarding productivity and profitability.
Climate’s Fieldview, our Silicon Valley digital platform, is the basis for developing the digital solutions that we apply to agriculture to add value along the entire process. Data collection leads to many opportunities for the producer because it creates value related to the specific needs of the farmer.
Q: How can Monsanto’s digital approach shape the Mexican agribusiness industry?
A: The development of data analysis can make production cycles more efficient. The information retrieved can boost the conventional and biotechnological development of seeds to resist specific pests, improve their tolerance to climatic conditions and other agricultural constraints resulting from Mexico’s natural geography. We can customize solutions for farmers and companies anywhere in the world.
Q: What would Monsanto say to those who remain skeptical about the use of genetic engineering in agriculture?
A: Genetic engineering in agricultural products can help reduce considerably the application of chemicals and, at the same time, reduce the industry’s environmental impact. Developing these products can help Mexico improve its food sovereignty through local production and ensure long-term nutrition for its population.
Q: What does Mexico need to do to become an agribusiness leader in Latin America?
A: Geographical and natural conditions do not change with borders. The soil, weather and other conditions are the same in Guatemala and the south of Mexico or in Tijuana and San Diego. Mexico needs greater political will to support the agricultural industry. The use of hybrid and other modern agriculture technologies could become fundamental to the country’s growth in agribusiness. It is necessary for the government to bet on the modernization of agricultural products and infrastructure to be more competitive.

 

Monsanto is an American multinational focused on agrochemical and agricultural biotechnology. Headquartered in St. Louis, Missouri, its goal is to develop agricultural technology for seeds, biotechnology and products for crop protection