July 7, 2014

The 8th Annual Plant Breeding Coordinating Committee Meeting and the 4th Annual National Association of Plant Breeders Meeting will be held Aug. 5-8 in Minneapolis, Minnesota.

“This meeting includes the business components necessary for each organization, the latest research and tours to see local plant breeding programs,” says Allen Van Deynze, who serves as Meeting Committee chair.

The theme for this year’s conference is “Breeding for Tolerance to Water Stress.” Van Deynze explains that there’s a great deal of interest in climate change by the U.S. Department of Agriculture and private companies. Speakers will hone in on issues, such as climatology, soil hydrology and those that affect breeding programs.

“When we talk about tolerance, it’s not just tolerance to drought,” says Van Deynze, who is the director of University of California, Davis, Seed Biotechnology Center and past chair of PBCC. “It’s also tolerance to flooding and freezing. Meeting participants will learn about new technologies to measure traits, how to handle genotype-by-environment interactions and strategies to develop varieties in a changing environment, which is challenging.”

This meeting also involves graduate students. Van Deynze points out that about half of the meeting participants will be graduate students.

“It’s a great opportunity for them to network and develop soft skills,” he says. “Each session will be hosted by a graduate student and during one of the general sessions, graduate students have the opportunity to give a one-minute talk. This helps put a face with a name and introduces students to company representatives.”

The joint meeting will be held at the Minneapolis Airport Marriott. For more information about the NAPB meeting, visit www.plantbreeding.org. Registration is $450 for members and $150 for students. To register for the 2014 meeting, visit www.plantbreeding.com.

Meeting sponsors include: AgReliant Genetics, Beck’s Superior Hybrids, Cargill, CHS, Cotton, Inc., Douglas Scientific, Dow AgroSciences, Driscoll, Ekland Marketing Company of California, HM-Clause, Issues Ink, LGC-Genomics, McLaughlin Gormley King Company, Monsanto Company, National Corn Growers Association, Nunhems/Bayer CropScience, DuPont Pioneer, Rapid Genomics, Rice Tec, Sakata, Syngenta Seeds, USDA Triticeae Coordinated Agricultural Project, United Soybean Board and the University of Minnesota.

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