Feeding a need


The tech sector and Silicon Valley
are synonymous. The Research Triangle embodies biotech and life science innovation.

Where is the world’s nucleus of global food systems? Kansas State University leaders and experts will tell you they’re in it.

“Kansas State University is already a global leader among research universities in addressing the world challenge of feeding a growing population,” said Kirk Schulz, Kansas State University president. “With the imminent construction of the $1.2 billion federal National Bio and Agro-Defense Facility on the Manhattan campus, the window is open to claim the global leadership position in global food systems.”

Many universities and entities stood at attention with the United Nations’ prediction that the world population will reach 9 billion by 2050. Kansas State University is snapping into action because of another prediction: The expected doubling of the number of people entering the middle class by 2030.

These young and middle-aged adults will expect a middle-class lifestyle, which includes

a safe, higher-quality diet that contains more animal protein. Additional food animals will require greater amounts of grain. However, limitations on arable land, water, the working age population and other resources may not allow producers to keep pace with demand if they only have existing technologies.

That’s where the university can step in. For 150 years, Kansas State University has been enmeshed in the food system from farm to fork. Today, the Biosecurity Research Institute represents a tremendous asset when

striving for global leadership, said Ron Trewyn, vice president for research.

“The co-location of a biosafety level-3 facility and a biosafety level-4 facility creates one of the world’s greatest concentrations of facilities for research in animal health, crop protection and food safety,” Trewyn said.

Construction on the NBAF facility’s Central Utility Plant continues.

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