Page 2: Sustainable businesses
Who is Syngenta?
Syngenta is a leading global agricultural business committed to sustainable agriculture through innovative research and technology whose customers are in the primary sector.
Syngenta's goal is 'to be the leading global provider of innovative solutions and brands to growers and the food and feed chain'.
Syngenta is a relatively new company formed by the merger of the agricultural divisions of AstraZeneca and Novartis in 2000. Syngenta's goal is 'to be the leading global provider of innovative solutions and brands to growers and the food and feed chain'. This provides the business with its direction as part of the virtuous circle. The company offers its customers a choice of chemistry, seeds and biotechnology products.
More than 19,500 people work for Syngenta in over 90 countries around the world. Its main activity is producing products that protect crops from weeds, diseases and pest infestations, and breeding and selling seeds of new crop varieties. This enables agricultural land to be used for the sustainable production of food.
Why is research and development so important?
Syngenta works in partnership with over 150 organisations worldwide to research and develop sustainable agriculture practices.
Research and development (R&D) into plant breeding and plant protection products by companies such as Syngenta is essential to ensure higher agricultural productivity. Without crop protection products it is estimated that 40% of arable food production would be lost to pests and diseases.
Syngenta invests almost US$800 million (about £500 million) each year in research and development to improve ways of growing and protecting crops.
This case study illustrates how the use of science for research and development into new products has helped to build Syngenta as a leading global agribusiness.
Syngenta operates in markets where transactions take place between companies rather than direct to consumers. These are known as business-to-business (B2B) markets. This is why some people might not be aware of the company's name.
However, Syngenta touches nearly 95% of the world's population through its products and activities. Within these markets, Syngenta uses its R&D knowledge, creativity and skills to give it competitive advantage.
The development of a new crop protection product or a new plant variety takes many years and requires a large investment both of people and capital. Syngenta's R&D invests over $2 million per day to ensure it has a pipeline of new products coming to market and to keep it ahead of its competitors.