BayerBayer CropScience and the National Centre for Scientific Research (Centre National de la Recherche Scientifique, CNRS) in Paris, France, have renewed a framework agreement signed in 2005. The new, joint research projects pursued under this agreement are intended to contribute to ensuring a sustainable food supply for a growing world population in the context of climate change.

Over the next four years, Bayer CropScience will be investing around EUR 4 million in joint projects. This funding will support basic research projects at a number of CNRS institutions throughout France. One of them is the ‘mixed laboratory’ at the La Dargoire research campus operated by Bayer CropScience in Lyon. The 20 scientists who work there will be taking a multidisciplinary approach to improving the stress tolerance of plants and ways of increasing yields, fields in which the CNRS research teams are among the global leaders.

"Collaboration with internationally renowned institutions like the CNRS is an important element of our comprehensive global research activities," emphasized Professor Friedrich Berschauer, Chairman of the Board of Management of Bayer CropScience AG, at the signing of the agreement in Paris. "The only way to overcome the challenges of the future is with clever minds and an enormous effort in all fields of research."

The CEO underlined the importance of intensive agricultural research. "Without innovations we will not be able to continue producing sufficient quantities of high-quality food in the future," Berschauer said. "What we need is nothing less than a second green revolution." He called for public spending on agricultural research to be accorded even greater importance. "We must return agriculture to the heart of international research and development policy and once again invest much more intensively in technology and agricultural infrastructure."

"The CNRS wants to create relationships based on trust with its industrial partners," underlined Arnold Migus, the General Director of the CNRS. "The first four years of this partnership have resulted in a number of research projects with shared objectives which have led to doctoral theses and joint patents," Migus said. The renewal of the framework agreement will allow scientific and technological interaction to be intensified, specifically in the areas of plant health and environmental compatibility.

Dr. Alexander Klausener, Head of Research at Bayer CropScience, underlined the international significance of the projects currently in progress. He mentioned the example of work recently initiated on 'signaling technology'. This research is focusing on the natural symbiosis between soil, roots, plants and micro-organisms with the aim of improving the plants’ nutrition uptake and hence increasing yields.

About Bayer CropScience
Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health care, nutrition and high-tech materials. Bayer CropScience AG, a subsidiary of Bayer AG with annual sales of about EUR 6.4 billion (2008), is one of the world's leading innovative crop science companies in the areas of crop protection, non-agricultural pest control, seeds and plant biotechnology. The company offers an outstanding range of products and extensive service backup for modern, sustainable agriculture and for non-agricultural applications. Bayer Crop¬Science has a global workforce of about 18,000 and is represented in more than 120 countries. This and further news is available at:

About CNRS
The French National Centre for Scientific Research (CNRS) is a science and technology agency operating under the auspices of the Ministry of Research. With more than 25,000 people, including 11,400 researchers and 13,600 engineers, technicians and office staff, the CNRS covers all fields of knowledge. It operates through 1,235 research and service units and is organized into eight scientific departments. Its annual budget is around EUR 2.5 billion, equivalent to one fifth of France’s total civilian research budget. The CNRS operates through its own laboratories, as well as through others run jointly with universities, fellow research organizations and industry. These laboratories are located throughout France, and several are even outside the country. In addition to its considerable human and financial resources, the CNRS spans a broad variety of scientific disciplines and teaming arrangements. It plays a pivotal role in French research as a breeding ground for scientific and technological innovation. With 16 Nobel Prize winners and nine Fields Medals, the CNRS has a long tradition of research excellence.