Bayer to Build New R&D Facility at German Site in Monheim
The new complex with labs, offices, and a greenhouse area will offer space for approximately 200 employees and focus “on developing the next generation of chemicals for a sustainable future and enhancing the environmental and human safety of crop protection.”
“Looking into the future, we must radically transform today’s farming systems and switch to regenerative agriculture practices that produce more with less, while restoring more. There is a high demand for pushing beyond established standards in safety to unlock breakthrough innovation and crop protection solutions with better environmental profiles,” said Robert Reiter, Head of R&D at Bayer’s Crop Science division.
The investment is also a clear commitment to Europe as a base of operations, said Bayer. Over the past three years, the company states that it has invested €180 million at its German site in Dormagen, with a focus on expanding production capacities for modern crop protection.
In addition to residue analytics and metabolism studies in target crops, rotational crops and livestock for human safety, the key focus area of the new facility will be on environmental safety, Bayer said. This includes exposure studies in different environmental compartments as well as safety studies on non-target organisms such as aquatic and soil organisms, wild birds and mammals, and pollinators like honey bees and bumble bees.
Rachel Rama, head of small molecules at Crop Science, said: “With our new disruptive innovation approach – what we call CropKey – we are now designing molecules instead of selecting them.” Data science, early safety screenings, modeling and artificial intelligence are crucial elements that enable the creation of the next generation of crop protection, taking advantage of massive amounts of data and machine learning and setting a new benchmark, Rama explained.