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New EU project aims to double crop yields

- Jan 18, 2019 -

New EU project aims to double crop yields

The new CropBooster-P EU project will focus on improving crops as our current crops will have to be redesigned and there is an urgent need for a “future proof” analysis.

There is a need to double the global crop productivity to produce enough plant biomass to achieve future food and nutrition security and to meet future bio-economic needs. The increase in crop production must be achieved without loss of nutritional quality.

Double production

The new EU project, consisting of 18 partners, called CropBooster-P, will address these challenges by identifying adaptation and productivity enhancements to meet environmental and social change priorities and opportunities. Ultimately, these crops will need to double world food production to meet the world's expected demand of 10 billion inhabitants and reduce the impact of climate change. Although it has been in contact with the public from the outset and by mobilizing European plant science, the goal of the project is to develop a white paper - a road map - that will describe the doubling of European crop production and the preparation of these crops for these crops by 2050. way. Demand and the future climate of Europe.

Use the land already used

Ensuring adequate food for the global population by 2050 requires a significant increase in agricultural production - equivalent to 70% to 100% of production growth. “This is indeed a daunting task, especially since we have to achieve this growth on the agricultural land already in use,” said René Klein Lankhorst, researcher at the Wageningen University and research project developer and CropBooster-P project. .

Optimize the photosynthesis process

According to Klein Lankhorst, it is technically feasible to double European agricultural production by 2050. The key is to optimize the photosynthesis process: “Current crops now convert the percentage of sunlight into plant biomass; about 0.5 to 1%. We only need to double the percentage to 1% to 2%, which has been scientifically proven to be possible But it is more important than photosynthesis; improved crops must also use water and minerals such as nitrogen and phosphorus very efficiently. In addition, increasing production should have no effect on quality and nutritional value. To achieve this goal, a large number of Additional research."


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