Preprint Essay Version 1 Preserved in Portico This version is not peer-reviewed

Towards Equitable Public Sector Plant Breeding In The US

Version 1 : Received: 25 January 2022 / Approved: 26 January 2022 / Online: 26 January 2022 (12:48:26 CET)

How to cite: Brzozowski, L.; Hanson, S.; Jannink, J.; Meints, B.; Moore, V.; Tufan, H.; Villwock, S. Towards Equitable Public Sector Plant Breeding In The US. Preprints 2022, 2022010396 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202201.0396.v1). Brzozowski, L.; Hanson, S.; Jannink, J.; Meints, B.; Moore, V.; Tufan, H.; Villwock, S. Towards Equitable Public Sector Plant Breeding In The US. Preprints 2022, 2022010396 (doi: 10.20944/preprints202201.0396.v1).

Abstract

Plant breeding is central to agriculture, and shifts in plant breeding practices (e.g., hybrid development) and selection goals (e.g., response to synthetic fertilizer) have catalyzed monumental and persistent changes in agricultural production systems of all scales with social, political, economic, and environmental repercussions. While plant breeders are largely trained in the sciences of biology, genetics, and statistics, we posit an ethical imperative to examine the degree of equity with which the benefits of new research and plant varieties are distributed. In the United States, the history of plant breeding parallels the colonial history of agriculture, which compels reflection by current plant breeders about their role in shaping our agricultural system. In this perspective essay, we examine longstanding ideas about equitable food systems through the lens of public plant breeding in the United States. We propose a framework for equitable public plant breeding with respect to both its process and outcomes, and we intend for the ideas presented herein to catalyze reflection, discussions, and actions as the plant breeding community seeks greater equity in the food and seed systems our work supports.

Keywords

public sector science; agriculture; equity; seed sovereignty; food security; intellectual property

Subject

BIOLOGY, Agricultural Sciences & Agronomy

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