Monsanto Communications Initiative Highlights Need For Sustainable Approaches To Agriculture

Monsanto (NYSE: MON) has launched a multifaceted communications initiative to raise awareness of the agricultural challenges facing the planet, including a need to double food production by 2050. The effort builds on the company’s pledge to work with other businesses, citizen groups and governments on needed changes to meet growing food production demand while conserving key resources.

“The fundamental question for Monsanto and every organization involved in global food issues is how to produce more, conserve more and improve farmers’ lives” said Jerry Steiner, executive vice president of Monsanto. “We believe that for agriculture to be sustainable and serve the needs of our growing population, we must do all three.”

Steiner highlighted the role of advancements in agriculture in resolving the challenges of food availability, climate change, energy demand and drought. He said the world will need to actively evaluate and implement approaches that can help local farmers rise to meet these challenges. “We believe boosting crop yields on each acre already farmed is one part of the solution. Getting more output from each unit of input is another. There is no one silver bullet or single way to accomplish all of this. Addressing these challenges will require the collaborative efforts of diverse organizations working together.”

As an agricultural seed company, Monsanto invests more than $2 million every day into its research-and-development efforts to increase and protect agricultural yields. This investment is aimed at discovering and delivering the best and latest tools to improve crop yields, while protecting the environment and improving the lives of its farmer customers.

Monsanto’s communications initiative includes the launch of the Web site and a print ad that asks, “How can we squeeze more food from a raindrop?” The ad advances a discussion of how farmers, who today produce 60 percent of the world’s food supply from non-irrigated crops, will need to produce more per every drop of rain that nature provides.

The goal of the effort is to build awareness of every person’s stake in practices that help agriculture become more sustainable to meet current and future needs. The ad is appearing in leading business, consumer and government publications such as The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times and The Hill. The awareness initiative reinforces Monsanto’s three-point commitment announced in June to double the yield of its three core crops by 2030, develop seeds that require one-third fewer resources per unit produced by 2030, and help improve the lives of an additional 5 million resource-poor farmers. Steiner said the company’s commitments reflect the input of farmers, policymakers, scientists, non-governmental organizations and experts in academia and industry.