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Biotech is the Future of Agriculture

June 27, 2017
My name is Brian Glenn and I’m the new food and ag intern for BIO this summer. I’m going into my junior year at the University of Maryland where I am studying Agriculture resource and economics. I grew up on a small 6-acre farm in Howard County, Maryland where we have raised Hereford beef cattle. I joined 4-H when I was just 5 years old and spent most of my years as a member of the Howard County 4-H Dairy Club, which had a tremendous impact on my love for and knowledge of agriculture. My love for agriculture has continued to blossom through college, where I’ve continued my involvement in ag on campus.

I chose to study agriculture not only because of my background but because it is one of the most important industries in the world. This industry works to feed billions of people every day through a process that starts in fields cultivated by farmers and ends in the consumers’ hands. The health of humans, animals, and the environment are all interconnected, and agriculture is at the very center of it.

With such a huge responsibility, there are also many issues facing the food industry. How will rising sea level, changing growing seasons, and more extreme weather events due to climate change affect food production? How will warmer temperatures affect the spread of disease and crop loss from insects? How do we continue to feed a growing population with a depleting amount of land and resources? In a world without biotechnology, these questions are daunting. However, with the advancements within biotechnology and genetically modified crops, we have effective strategies of adapting to and mitigating climate change as well as the means to increase yields in order to feed a growing population.

This is why I knew that I wanted to intern at BIO. I wanted to experience the forefront of modern technology and know that I am working for an organization that is the future of the agricultural, health, and energy industries. BIO helps to feed, heal, and fuel the world. In the food and ag sector, BIO’s members are genetically modifying crops to withstand more extreme environmental conditions, use fewer pesticide applications, and allow farmers to reduce tilling farmland. These are real adaptation and mitigation strategies for climate change that BIO and its members help advance. Crops with higher yields and nutritional levels are also being developed to help combat world hunger and malnutrition. More so than ever, biotechnology plays an integral part in everyone’s lives.

Growing up in agriculture, I want to work for an organization that has the best interests of farmers and consumers in mind, and BIO has exactly that. I’m excited to serve as the food and agriculture intern at BIO this summer so I can do my part in helping secure our future with biotechnology.