Bayer CropScience and the Florida Specialty Crop Foundation Join Together to Fight Citrus Greening

Bayer CropScience and the Florida Specialty Crop Foundation Join Together to
Fight Citrus Greening

Organizations Collaborate on Three-Year Research Effort to Address Deadly
Disease Threatening Florida's $9 Billion Citrus Industry

AMELIA ISLAND, Fla., Sept. 24, 2013 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- via PRWEB - The
Florida citrus market has suffered a loss of more than $4.5 billion in crops
and is down an estimated 8,300 jobs due to citrus greening disease (1). In an
effort to find a solution for the serious disease, Bayer CropScience announced
a collaboration with the Florida Specialty Crop Foundation to create a
three-year grant program for citrus greening research. The $200,000 grant was
awarded to the Citrus Research and Development Foundation (CDRF) at a dinner
during the 70th FFVA Annual Meeting.

Citrus greening, also known as Huanglongbing (HLB), is a devastating disease
impacting the nation's orange and other citrus crops. Healthy citrus trees can
produce fruit for multiple decades, however, once infected with HLB, trees can
yield discolored, inedible fruit and can die in as little as five years.

More than 70 percent of U.S. households regularly consume orange juice and
other citrus foods(2), and approximately 80 percent of U.S. orange juice is
made from Florida oranges. By reducing the productivity of citrus groves,
citrus greening is significantly impacting the future of Florida citrus
production and the American diet.

"With this new initiative we continue our focus on finding innovative
alternatives to improve the sustainability and economic value of crops from
the field all the way to consumers," said Rob Schrick, horticulture business
lead, Bayer CropScience. "Florida Specialty Crop Foundation and CRDF are
natural partners for us in this effort, as both organizations have the citrus
expertise and outstanding research capabilities needed to combat this serious

In its first year, the grant will support CRDF's existing research on HLB and
Asian citrus psyllid (ACP), the insect that serves as the vector for HLB. For
the remaining years, the collaboration partners will convene to discuss the
state of the industry and determine the necessary research. The collaborative
grant project is funded by Bayer CropScience and administered by Florida
Specialty Crop Foundation.

"Bayer CropScience is dedicated to providing innovative solutions for the food
chain," said Florida Specialty Crop Foundation Executive Director Sonia Tighe.
"We are honored that Bayer continues to partner with our foundation to meet
the needs of growers and the citrus industry."

For the past 150 years, Bayer has been committed to their mission of providing
"Science For A Better Life," and this citrus greening research grant is
another example of that commitment. In addition to the three-year grant, Bayer
also donated $10,000 to Farmers Feeding Florida (FFF), a food recovery program
instituted by the Florida Association of Food Banks (FAFB). FFF works to
provide much-needed relief to growers and packers left with excess produce and
Florida residents in need of healthy food. Bayer's donation will help to
further FFF's mission and support the Florida food industry.

For additional information on Bayer CropScience sustainability initiatives
please visit
You can also follow and share with us on Twitter @Bayer4CropsUS or connect on
the Bayer CropScience social media hub, Bayer Connect.

(1) - Florida Citrus Mutual

(2) - Simmons Market Research Bureau. (2013). Simmons NHCS Adult Study
(Spring, 2013) [Computer Software].

About Bayer CropScience

Bayer is a global enterprise with core competencies in the fields of health
care, agriculture and high-tech materials. This year the company is
celebrating 150 years of Bayer – consistent with its mission "Bayer: Science
For A Better Life". Bayer CropScience, the subgroup of Bayer AG responsible
for the agricultural business, has annual sales of EUR 8,383 million (2012)
and is one of the world's leading innovative crop science companies in the
areas of seeds, crop protection and non-agricultural pest control. The company
offers an outstanding range of products including high value seeds, innovative
crop protection solutions based on chemical and biological modes of action as
well as an extensive service backup for modern, sustainable agriculture. In
the area of non-agricultural applications, Bayer CropScience has a broad
portfolio of products and services to control pests from home and garden to
forestry applications. The company has a global workforce of 20,800 and is
represented in more than 120 countries. This and further news is available at:


Bayer CropScience Media Hotline, 1-877-879-6162, or

Becca Hogan

External Communications Manager

Bayer CropScience

Tel: (919) 549-2998

Email: becca(dot)hogan(at)bayer(dot)com

Ayanna Luke

Porter Novelli

Tel: (404) 995-4536

Email: ayanna(dot)luke(at)porternovelli(dot)com


Find more information at

Forward-Looking Statements

This release may contain forward-looking statements based on current
assumptions and forecasts made by Bayer Group or subgroup management. Various
known and unknown risks, uncertainties and other factors could lead to
material differences between the actual future results, financial situation,
development or performance of the company and the estimates given here. These
factors include those discussed in Bayer's public reports which are available
on the Bayer website at The company assumes no liability whatsoever
to update these forward-looking statements or to conform them to future events
or developments.

This article was originally distributed on PRWeb. For the original version
including any supplementary images or video, visit

CONTACT: Bayer CropScience, LP
         Becca Hogan
         (919) 549-2998
Press spacebar to pause and continue. Press esc to stop.