HarvestPlus: developing and delivering micronutrient-dense crops

Abstract

Plant breeding for micronutrient density (biofortification) gained legitimacy when micronutrient deficiencies were recognized as global public health challenge of the 21st century. In response, Harvest Plus was established to add food nutritional quality to agricultural production research paradigms and reduce micronutrient malnutrition among poor at-risk populations by capitalizing on agricultural research as tool for public health interventions. Harvest Plus' applied and strategic research is driven by an impact/product pathway that integrates crop development, nutrition, socio-economic disciplines and country specific crop delivery plans. As for novel traits, biofortified product concepts must consider factors associated with probability of success in achieving: (i) technological goals with trait discovery and expression in adapted genotypes, (ii) crop improvement goals to generate a biofortified germplasm product without compromising agronomic performance, nutrition, or end-use quality; and (iii) commercial goals to guide the design and delivery of the technology. Harvest Plus has three project phases: (i) discovery (2004-2008), (ii) development (2009-2013), and (iii) delivery (2014-2018). An enhanced knowledge base allowed shifting from an emergent to a deliberate strategy with prioritizing 10 country/micronutrient crop profiles for six crops and projecting release dates in phase II. State-of-art and knowledge base is presented and multidisciplinary themes are explained with an emphasis on product development.

Citation

Pfeiffer, W.H. HarvestPlus: developing and delivering micronutrient-dense crops. Presented at 19th World Congress of Soil Science: Soil solutions for a changing world, Brisbane, Australia, 1-6 August 2010. Congress Symposium 5: Micronutrients in soils and plants in relation to crop and human health 2010. (2010) pp. 12-15

HarvestPlus: developing and delivering micronutrient-dense crops

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