Corporate Concentration and Technological Change in the Global Seed Industry
Sustainability, Vol. 9(9), p. 1632, 2017. DOI:10.3390/su9091632
Posted: 16 Oct 2017
Date Written: September 14, 2017
In the past three decades, the seed sector has experienced, and is now again experiencing, corporate concentration trends. The fallout of this consolidation is the subject of numerous concerns. However, the seed sector is rather poorly understood. Thus, it is useful to understand it better and to investigate the potential impact on the agri-food chain of the trend toward increased corporate concentration. The first part of this paper presents the main characteristics of the global seed sector, its stakeholders, and its size in the agri-food chain. Next, the corporate consolidation trends of the seed industry over the past two years are examined. The technological evolution of the seed sector is also briefly presented. In the last part of this paper, the fallout of recent mergers and acquisitions in the seed industry are analyzed. Opposing views are expressed on the impact of these mergers and acquisitions in the agri-food chain: while certain stakeholders worry about the risk of food power by the biggest companies, some others expect useful innovations.
Keywords: Seed, Seed Industry, Global Seed Sector, Seed Company, Consolidation, Corporate Concentration, Agri-Food Chain, Biotechnology, GMO, Plant Breeding, Agrochemical Industry, Seed Price, Seed Diversity, Gene Editing, Farmer, Controversy, Technical Change, Technological Evolution, Multinational Company
JEL Classification: Q55, Q56, Q59, O00, O13, O30, O31, O32, O33, O34, O39, Q00, Q01, Q12, Q13, Q16, Q19, Q20
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