On August 15th, 2018, Sino-US Food and Agriculture Innovation Center officially joined membership of Seed Central, University of California, Davis.
Established in 2010 as an initiative of the UC Davis SBC and SeedQuest, Seed Central (SC) facilitates communication, networking and research collaboration between UC Davis and the surrounding more than 100 seed and ag biotech industry so as to promote development of agriculture in California, the United Stated and the whole world at large. This initiative meets the goal of SUFAIC that promotes rapid industrialization of agricultural and food technologies including seed breeding technology both at home and abroad. Seed Central now has 44 company and organization members from the global seed and food industry.
Seed Central offers regular networking events with featured guest speakers in Davis (nine per year) and Salinas (two per year). Since SC's creation in 2010, attendance at these events has continued to grow with a total of over 1,800 participants from over 340 companies and organizations from California, the U.S. and overseas.
Additionally, SC teamed up with the UC Davis Office of Research to present at each event one of the start-ups housed at the HM.Clause incubator. Seed Central also introduced Conversations in 3D, where featured guests engage in interview-style conversation in lieu of a traditional Powerpoint presentation. In Salinas, SC’s October event last year facilitated networking between researchers from UC Davis and USDA ARS, UC Cooperative Extension specialists and Farm Advisors, the Grower-Shipper Association of Central California, professors, administrators and students from Hartnell College, California State University Monterey Bay, UC Santa Cruz, and Aggie Ambassadors.
In addition to connecting UC Davis research with industry, SC’s other important focus is to connect UC Davis students with potential mentors and employers by offering a number of activities that give students an opportunity to become engaged with the seed industry. Toward this end, students can attend networking events, field trips to seed, ag biotech and food companies, and professional development workshops. Seed Central also offers students a mentorship program connecting them with professionals, an annual Grand Prize Internship, professional shadowing days, career development workshops, and assistance in finding internships and permanent employment.
The fact that SUFIC joins membership of Seed Central is of vital and profound significance. Through attending each other’s seed symposiums, field visits, seed-related training and other activities, exchanges between Chinese and American academic communities and seed industries will be strengthened. Moreover, rapid industrialization and marketing of high quality seeds will be achieved through joint initiative of Seed Central and SUFAIC on assisting both domestic and international seed companies in performing breeding comparison tests in targeted country. Seed Central and SUFAIC will join hands in tackling challenges and difficulties confronting seed industry so as to achieve win-win results.