Manage episode 245831736 series 2402595
"Just 50 years ago, some 1,000 small and family-owned seed companies were producing and distributing seeds in the United States; by 2009, there were fewer than 100. Thanks to a series of mergers and acquisitions over the last few years, four multinational agrochemical firms — Corteva, ChemChina, Bayer and BASF — now control over 60 percent of global seed sales."
Michael Mazourek is co-founder of Row 7 Seed Company and an Associate Professor of Plant Breeding and Genetics at Cornell University in Ithaca, New York. He first met the likes of the butternut squash, the cucumber, the pea and the pepper tending to his family’s garden as a child; little did he know that the would later go on to specialize in these same crops. A deep interest in human health and getting to the root of how stuff works led him to the study of biochemistry, illuminating the links between plants and the important phytochemicals in our diet. Today he has the opportunity to strengthen these connections—and serve regional farmers—by breeding improved vegetables and training others in his craft.