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BIO Applauds Dedication of Norman Borlaug Statue

On what would have been his 100th birthday, Norman E. Borlaug, American geneticist and plant pathologist from Cresco, IA, was honored with a statue and dedication ceremony in the U.S. Capitol’s National Statuary Hall.

Borlaug, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, the Congressional Gold Medal and the Presidential Medal of Freedom, led a global agricultural evolution through his research and advocacy for modern farming practices. Known as the Father of the “Green Revolution,” Borlaug is credited with saving more than a billion people from starvation with the development of high-yield, disease-resistant crop varieties and modern agricultural systems.

Jim Greenwood, President and CEO of the Biotechnology Industry Organization (BIO) issued the following statement in tribute to Dr. Borlaug:

“On behalf of BIO and its members, we join millions around the world in celebrating the life and legacy of Dr. Norman E. Borlaug, and we applaud the State of Iowa for commissioning the 7-ft. bronze statue to be displayed in the National Statuary Hall Collection.

“Through scientific innovation, compassion for the poor, and expert knowledge of agricultural practices, Borlaug introduced groundbreaking technologies that will forever change the practices of farmers and the prospects for hungry people around the globe.

“As we confront the challenge of feeding 9 billion people by 2050, we need to follow Dr. Borlaug’s vision for using technology in agriculture. We need to be more forward-thinking and embrace science and innovation to solve the world’s problems.

“We need to fight agriculture’s real challenges: plant diseases, diminishing natural resources, climate change and global food poverty. Biotechnology is a key tool in this fight, and it’s time for science to move forward.

“Norman Borlaug said: ‘The majority of agricultural scientists, including myself, anticipate great benefits from biotechnology in the coming decades to help meet our future needs for food and fiber...we must speak unequivocally and convincingly to policy makers that global food insecurity will not disappear without new technology.’

“He proved to the world that large-scale progress is attainable. We know we can increase the world’s food supply. We can help alleviate hunger, raise farmers’ incomes, improve health and nutrition, expand opportunities and strengthen regional economies. This mission is not just scientific, it’s humanitarian.”

*More information on Norman Borlaug and the dedication ceremony is posted online at http://iowaborlaugstatue.org.

About BIO

BIO represents more than 1,100 biotechnology companies, academic institutions, state biotechnology centers and related organizations across the United States and in more than 30 other nations. BIO members are involved in the research and development of innovative healthcare, agricultural, industrial and environmental biotechnology products. BIO also produces the BIO International Convention, the world’s largest gathering of the biotechnology industry, along with industry-leading investor and partnering meetings held around the world. BIO produces BIOtechNOW, an online portal and monthly newsletter chronicling “innovations transforming our world.” Subscribe to BIOtechNOW.

Upcoming BIO Events

BIO Asia International Conference
April 8-9, 2014
Tokyo, Japan

World Congress on Industrial Biotechnology
May 12-15, 2014
Philadelphia, PA

BIO International Convention
June 23-26, 2014
San Diego, CA

Livestock Biotech Summit
September 16-18, 2014
Sioux Falls, SD

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