Petra Jorasch Petra Jorasch holds a Ph.D. in plant molecular biology. She is an internationally recognized science & industry advocacy expert with more than 20 years of experience in relevant policy frameworks. She worked for 13 years in the German seed sector at the interface of science and industry. From 2014–2017, she was Vice Secretary General of the German Plant Breeders’ Association.  Petra joined Euroseeds in February 2017 as the spokesperson of the EU plant breeding sector on new genomic techniques.


How plant breeding innovation can help reconcile sustainability with agricultural productivity


Reconciling sustainability with agricultural productivity in the face of climate change relies strongly on the development of resilient, high-yielding crops of superior nutritional value that can be grown more resource efficiently. Therefore, innovation in plant breeding is gaining unprecedented importance. However, the regulatory burden for new genomic techniques (NGTs), including genome editing, is high in Europe. The European Court of Justice (2018) confirmed that organisms obtained by targeted mutagenesis must be considered Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) and with this fall under the burdensome and highly politicized EU-GMO approval system under which only one GMO event has ever been approved for cultivation back in 1998.
The presentation will discuss from an industry perspective how the plant breeding sector could implement plant breeding innovation to contribute to the objectives of the European Green Deal and the Farm to Fork Strategy if an enabling regulatory framework would be established.