Bayer CropScience wheat, oilseed breeding centre officially opens

BAYER CropScience's $14-million wheat and oilseed breeding centre officially opened on Thursday at Longerenong College.

The state-of-the-art centre is the first of its kind in Australia.

Bayer CropScience chief executive Jacqueline Applegate said the centre would focus on developing new wheat and oilseed varieties with higher yields and improved productivity for Australian farmers.

"This breeding centre will inject inspiration and capital into the Wimmera," she said.

"This is a tangible commitment to the future of agriculture in this country and part of a national vision for a profitable, respectable and sustainable agriculture industry."

She said it was important new technology was developed so farmers could better feed the country.

The centre will also provide training opportunities for students at Longerenong College.

"The centre will provide young people more opportunities for shared knowledge and integrated learning," Dr Applegate said.

Member for Lowan Hugh Delahunty said the opening represented a great day for the Wimmera.

"This is a great investment for the community," he said.

Longerenong College general manager John Goldsmith said the Bayer investment would attract more students to agricultural careers.

"The excitement and opportunities associated with the breeding centre are already being recognised by our college community," he said.

"There is no questions the partnership with Bayer and the benefits through shared research opportunities are influencing the way young people view agriculture."

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