Tremendous Agri Biotech Startup Opportunity In Hot Weather Wheat

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By Jacob Maslow

wheat field harvestOne of the great things about my job is that I look through financial news sites to keep up-to-date. It’s part of my job. I spend several hours every day going through all sorts of financial news. My job is to get down to the core of hot economic issues and present these issues in clear terms. I’m also aware of very interesting opportunities that investors might be interested in.

One particular news item that really got my attention is the work of Kansas State University professor, Harold Trick. Professor Trick is working on wheat that can tolerate a hot weather. This is a big deal if it can be commercialized. Why? Wheat normally grows best between 60 and 65 degrees Fahrenheit. This is a problem. Why? The vast majority of the world doesn’t support that weather. A large part of the world’s hunger problem is in the tropical belt. Many countries in the tropical areas, however, have a high demand for wheat. If wheat can be grown in warmer temperatures, wheat can provide an added food source for a vast chunk of the world’s population. Moreover, thanks to global warming, wheat might not be able to grow in the United States at optimal levels.

There’s a huge potential demand for heat-tolerant wheat. Whether you are thinking of bread-making in the United States and Europe or noodles in China and Southeast Asia, wheat is crucial.

Professor Trick, working with a wheat breeder, came up with a wheat variety that used rice genes. Using gene splicing, Professor Trick was able to imbue rice’s heat-tolerance to wheat. This is a big deal. Unfortunately, Professor Trick doesn’t have the money to shepherd this technology through the regulatory approval process. It can take years to get approved. He has said that he is looking for a company to sponsor this technology. This can be a breakthrough technology, and I’m surprised that large agricultural firms haven’t jumped at this opportunity yet.

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