Novozymes and Monsanto on Tuesday announced the BioAg Alliance, a long-term plan to transform research and commercialization of sustainable microbial products.
Through the alliance, Novozymes' capabilities with microbial discovery, development and production will be combined with Monsanto's microbial discovery, advanced biology, field testing and commercial capabilities.
Microbial-based solutions are derived from various naturally-occurring microorganisms such as bacteria and fungi. They can protect crops from pests and diseases and enhance plant productivity and fertility, a joint company statement said.
With faster development cycles compared to other agricultural innovations, as well as broad geographic and crop applicability, microbial solutions offer the potential to deliver cost-effective solutions that can increase yield using fewer inputs.
The companies said that microbial solutions are a large part of the agricultural biologicals industry, which today represents roughly $2.3 billion in annual sales and has posted mid-teens sales growth each of the last several years.
"As the world population grows at tremendous pace over the next decades, we need to significantly increase the output from our land without increasing the pressure on the environment," says Peder Holk Nielsen, CEO of Novozymes.
"The combined capabilities of Novozymes and Monsanto create an innovation powerhouse with a unique opportunity and approach to unleash the transformational opportunity in naturally derived microbial solutions in agriculture," Nielsen concluded.