Date：23 July (Friday)
Time: 15:40 – 17:10 (GMT+8)
Founder & Director - Research,
Tierra Seed Science Pvt. Ltd.
Dr. Parthasarathi Bhattacharya is a specialist in plant biotechnology area. He has a MSc in Botany (specialization in Genetics and Plant Breeding) and MTech in Biotechnology & Engineering (IIT). He got his Ph.D – in Chemical Engineering, IIT KGP (Plant Proteins). He worked as Technical Director @ ODC Biotech Pvt. Ltd., Mumbai, a Dairy Protein Company (1997-1999): Developed technology and established the complete manufacturing facility. Subsequently, he worked as VP (Biotechnology & Breeding) @ JK Seeds (a JK group company; 1999-2011) – Developed indigenous BT and many more biotechnologies and commercialized. He Co-Founded Tierra (2012) and the company subsequently acquired DuPont-Pioneer’s cotton company Xylem (2017) and Monsanto India cotton business (2018). He is also Winner of UNESCO Young Scientist award – 1991, National Innovation Award by NRDC – 2002. He has published a large number of peer reviewed research papers and holds multiple patents.
Though India ranks 11th and 12th globally in services and manufacturing sectors respectively, but it is second in the world in the agricultural sector. Government of India has taken up an ambitious challenge of doubling farmer's agricultural income by 2022 through application of modern tools and technologies besides streamlining produce prices and also by providing direct marketing routes to the farmers. Agriculture is the primary source of livelihood for about 58% of India's population, generating a value of about US$ 276.37 billion in FY20 – 21. The understanding of big shortfall between the amount of food we produce today and the amount needed to feed everyone in 2050. There will be nearly 10 billion people globally by 2050—about 3 billion more mouths to feed than there were in 2010. All said and done, barring few, the exploitation of modern Agriculture Biotechnology in Asia is still very limited. There is a dire need of cooperation between countries and targeted collaboration to address the current and future challenges. The application of genomics and computational tools can help reduce the breeding cycles and create much superior crops with high yield and biotic and abiotic stress tolerance. A majority of the Asian population are still undernourished. The nutritional quality improvement in all our food crops is the need of the hour where in biotech tools like genotyping by sequencing, automated phenotyping, speed breeding, double haploids, embryo rescue, genome editing, TILLING etc. can play a major role. AFOB can also significantly contribute by coordinating between member countries and help exchange knowledge, expertise, training new generation farmers and food technologists. India is seeing a large number of Agri - startups entering in hydroponics / vertical farming, drone based crop monitoring, biologicals etc. However, much more need to be done to develop climate resilient crop variety and environmentally safe agro chemical development.