Market for MCP seedlings demonstrate growing demand for elite genetic forestry products
RIDGEVILLE, SC – April 11, 2013 – ArborGen,the world leader in reforestation,recently celebrated the production of the company’s 100 millionth Mass Control Pollinated® (MCP) Loblolly Pine seedling. MCP seedlings are produced from crossing specific elite parents to generate seedlings with the highest genetic potential.These hybrid seedlings offer significant productivity improvementsand economic benefitsoveropen pollinated (OP) seeds, where only one parent is known, and have the potential to increase a forest landowner’s returns more than 100 percent. ArborGen is currently the only significant supplier of MCP seedlings in the United States.
“Advanced genetic products such as MCP seedlings are transforming forestry in the 21st century in the same way they transformed agriculture in the last one,” said John Pait, vice president of sales, marketing and product development.
“This recent milestone makes clear this transformation is well underway, and ArborGen is proud to be the leader bringing this technology to our forestry customers.”
To develop MCP seedlings,elite parents are selected by ArborGen’s tree breeders based on key productivity traits such as growth, form, branching and resistance to disease,stress and insects. ArborGen has designed breeding programs to combine the specific traits of top trees to produce truly superior seedlings.
“We are proud of this accomplishment and of the economic value MCP seedlings can bring to our customers, providing the technology to increase the volume and quality of wood on their timberlands,”added Pait.
“We have dedicated years to genetic research to select,breed, test and validate these high performing MCP seedlings, which can be purchased today to give our customers higher returns on their forestry assets. Growing our 100 millionth seedling demonstrates that our customers recognize the value of elite genetics while underscoring how our work is transforming forestry productivity.”
To put this milestone into perspective, the planting of100 million seedlings, at 500 trees per acre, would cover 312 square miles.That would be slightly larger than the entire area of New York City or over 145,000 football fields.