According to the company, boosting crop yields on existing acreage and with limited inputs is the foremost challenge in sustainable production agriculture. With the global population projected to reach nine billion by 2050, agricultural output must increase by 70% in this timeframe. As nations such as the United States pursue agriculture-intensive energy policies, demand and price volatility for agriculture commodities will continue to intensify. Diminishing agricultural resources such as arable land and fresh water will further compound this challenge. In the last twenty years, crop yields have improved from intensive breeding programs, increased planting densities, and biotech traits such as insect resistance and herbicide tolerance. However, blockbuster trait releases in recent years are only having single digit percentage impacts on yield. At a time when step changes are needed in crop productivity, yields are plateauing. One contributing factor to the decline in crop development is that nearly all commercial biotech traits are single-gene approaches to protecting yield. But to realize step changes and avoid a yield plateau, the company believes the industry must innovate beyond single-gene approaches to protecting yield, and realize step wise gains by increasing intrinsic yield. Benson Hill states that it is dedicated to delivering substantial production gains to the agriculture sector by advancing biotech-based traits to increase intrinsic yield.
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