Plant breeding in the public interest

Stelenes at Stelenes at
Fri Jun 9 15:40:34 EDT 2000

Open Pollinated (OP) varieties are simply not as genetically stable, or reproducable over generations in nature.  Breeding is not a stationary science of getting from a to b.  The nature of it is continuous improvement.  Hybrids give faster cycle times.  Hybrids allow the inventor to capture value.  By the way, seed represents about 1.0% the cost of your veggies, which certainly doesn't seem out of line since the average distributor takes out about 15%.  Whether someone makes money out of it or gets grants from the results of breeding, the end products will likely be the same.  In the US, free enterprise has generally worked better than State-run enterprises, the only exception being the problems related to monopolies. Just a few thoughts.

Doug Dawn
Woodland, CA
(passing through Laredo TX)

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