Source: University of California, Davis

Specialty crops are important components of human diets and nutrition. Although grown on just 4 percent of the total cropped area, specialty crops represented about 40 percent of the $140 billion in total agricultural receipts in the United States in 2007.

New research from UC Davis Professor and Seed Biotechnology Center Director Kent Bradford and Jamie (Miller) Shattuck examining the biotech research and development pipeline in these crops has documented a large body of scientific reports and field trials with the potential to benefit growers and consumers.

This study, published in the October issue of Nature Biotechnology, identified proof of concept transgenic work conducted on 78 specialty crops using more than 250 traits. These traits included many that would directly benefit consumers and others that would primarily benefit producers and only indirectly benefit consumers through reduced agricultural inputs, higher productivity, lower cost or reduced environmental impacts.

Original news release