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Report: Indiana Needs More Agriculture Promotion

More collaboration could lead to the creation of more biosciences startups, state leaders say.

Soybean

Photo: International Institute of Tropical Agriculture

State agriculture officials say Indiana isn't being as efficient as it could when it comes to collaboration.

Indiana needs to develop a state-wide network to promote the research and development of its food and agriculture industry, according to a report being released Thursday from Biocrossroads, a biosciences research organization in Indiana.

Purdue, Dow AgroSciences, and several other organizations already promote agriculture in the state.

But Biocrossroads President and CEO David Johnson says the groups are not working together as much as they could be. If they communicated more, he says, they could develop both new ideas and new companies.

“If we brought some additional folks together and thought about funding for some of those start-up opportunities and thought about some of the best ideas, we might be able to make a big additional contribution to the state’s economy,” Johnson says.

Johnson says each of the stakeholders should bring their strengths to the table and help brand Indiana as a food and agriculture state.

Purdue University Dean of Agriculture Jay Akridge says he likes the idea.

“I’d love to see some of the existing players continue to grow and expand and be successful, but also attract new players to the state because they see Indiana as a place where one it’s a great place to do business and two, they find people that can help them be successful,” Akridge says.

The report does not provide a timeline for such an effort, but Biocrossroads officials say they hope to have a list of organizations interested in the collaboration by the end of the year.

Gretchen Frazee

Gretchen Frazee is a reporter/producer for WFIU and WTIU news. Prior to her current role, Frazee worked as the associate online content coordinator for WFIU/WTIU. She graduated from the University of Missouri-Columbia where she studied multimedia journalism and anthropology. You can follow her on Twitter @gretchenfrazee.

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