Bruce Kettler, left, and Scott Beck, right, of Beck's Hybrids, celebrate their $5 million gift with Bruce McPheron, center, the dean of the college. The gift will support CFAES water quality research and the Farm Science Review.
Bruce Kettler, left, and Scott Beck, right, of Beck's Hybrids, celebrate their $5 million gift with Bruce McPheron, center, the dean of the college. The gift will support CFAES water quality research and the Farm Science Review.

A water quality effort and the Farm Science Review at The Ohio State University received a $1 million boost from Beck’s Hybrids, to be contributed over the next five years in monetary and in-kind support.

The gift was announced Thursday, May 21.

Beck’s Hybrids is the largest family-owned retail seed company in the United States and is based in Atlanta, Indiana. Beck’s has a location in London, Ohio, and serves farmers in eight Midwestern states.

“We are supporting Field to Faucet and the Farm Science Review because they are important to farmers, and farmers are important to us,” said Scott Beck, president of the company.

The university’s College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences launched Field to Faucet shortly after dangerous microcystin levels from harmful algae in Lake Erie shut down Toledo’s water supply for two days in August 2014. The new program’s goal is to ensure safe drinking water while maintaining an economically productive agricultural sector.

Ohio State’s Farm Science Review is a three-day educational and trade show event held each September at the Molly Caren Agricultural Center outside London, Ohio.

“We know farmers work hard to protect the environment, and we hope our support of Field to Faucet will give them more tools to protect Ohio’s water resources,” Beck said. “And FSR is where many in agriculture go to learn about the latest in farming.”

Beck’s owns property adjacent to the Review site where the company will highlight its joint research with CFAES’s outreach arm, Ohio State University Extension.

“Beck’s Hybrids’ great generosity will go far in advancing the objectives of Field to Faucet,” said Bruce McPheron, Ohio State’s vice president for agricultural administration and dean of CFAES. “Clearly, Beck’s shares our goal of identifying best practices for nutrient management. And their support of Farm Science Review— the largest university-sponsored event of its kind in the country — will greatly enhance our outreach effort.”

“By cooperating with Ohio State on these water quality projects and supporting the mission of the Farm Science Review, we want to help farmers become more productive and successful while protecting Ohio’s important natural resources,” Beck said. “We expect this to be the beginning of a long partnership with the College of Food, Agricultural, and Environmental Sciences at Ohio State.”