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Strawberry fields forever: Bayer's bold move into UK breeding programme

Bayer is set to bolster its position in the fruit and vegetable sector by taking over the strawberry breeding programme from NIAB, a renowned UK agricultural research institution.

This strategic move by Bayer aims to cater to the year-round strawberry demand by focusing on farms that specialise in protected strawberry cultivation.

NIAB has confirmed that the breeding programme will remain operational from its East Malling location in Kent.

Inci Dannenberg, who heads Bayer’s Vegetable division, commented, "Strawberries lead the fresh fruit sales, accounting for a significant 23%.

"As we step into the strawberry market, our goal is to provide growers with top-tier genetics, innovative crop protection solutions, and advanced digital tools."

She further added, "Growing strawberries under protective conditions offers growers better control over environmental factors, pest management, and diseases. Moreover, cultivating them closer to consumers can potentially enhance their shelf life."

The acquisition is slated to be finalised by the start of next year. While the exact financial details remain undisclosed, this move signifies Bayer's commitment to sustainable and efficient strawberry production in the UK.


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