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Simon N. Groot, winner of The World Food Prize 2019

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Simon N. Groot of the Netherlands has been announced as the 2019 World Food Prize Laureate for his transformative role in empowering millions of smallholder farmers. More than 60 countries earn greater incomes through enhanced vegetable production, benefitting hundreds of millions of consumers with greater access to nutritious vegetables for healthy diets. 

The announcement was made at a ceremony in the U.S. Department of State hosted and presided over by Secretary of State Mike Pompeo. Acting Under Secretary for Economic Growth, Energy, and the Environment Manisha Singh gave remarks, and Ambassador Kenneth M. Quinn, president of the World Food Prize Foundation, made Mr. Groot’s award public.

Source: DBAV

“Like Dr. Norman Borlaug before him, Simon N. Groot has dedicated his life to improving the livelihoods of millions around the world,” said Amb. Quinn. “With his partner in the Philippines, he began developing vegetable varieties with enhanced disease resistance and significantly higher yields. As the use of his seeds spread throughout the Philippines and to Thailand, Indonesia and across Southeast Asia, farmers’ daily lives were uplifted and consumers benefited from greater access to nutritious vegetables. Mr. Groot in effect developed a stunningly impactful global network of seed producers who are transforming the lives of 20 million farmers every year. For this extraordinary accomplishment, he truly deserves to be named the 2019 World Food Prize Laureate.”

Awarded by the World Food Prize Foundation, this $250,000 prize honors Mr. Groot’s unparalleled achievements as the founder and leader of East-West Seed. His initiative over the past four decades has developed a dynamic, smallholder-centric tropical vegetable seed industry, starting in Southeast Asia and spreading through Asia, Africa and Latin America. Today East-West Seed serves over 20 million smallholder farmers in more than 60 tropical countries.

Read more on: The World Food Prize

Source: East-West Seed

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