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China, Brazil outspending US on ag research and development

A pair of agricultural leaders say the US needs significant investments in research and development to remain globally competitive.

Beth Ford, President and CEO of Land O’Lakes, tells Brownfield the next farm bill needs to address the issue because many countries like China are significantly outspending the U.S. “They’ve increased their funding for Ag research and technology because they recognize there’s a practice change, so we need applied research pots. We can use data and technology. We also need R&D for seed technology, crop protection, etc.”

University of Nebraska President Ted Carter says additional funding would help land-grant universities develop resources to help solve problems like the global water shortage. “We need to make sure that we’re getting that type of research money for solutions before we are actually in a water crisis.”

Both Ford and Carter say that current federal funding levels don’t match the needs of the industry.

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