Abstract

Climate change is predicted to result in disruption of many farming systems. The Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) predicts a 15-20% fall in global agricultural production by 2080. Consequently, adaptation of major crop species to climate change will be the biggest challenge for plant breeders this century. Biotechnology will be important when adapting crops to better tolerate changing stresses. It includes using advanced genetic mapping technologies, like molecular markers, in the breeding and development of new varieties. Molecular markers are used to provide greater focus, accuracy and speed in crop breeding programmes with further advances coming. Genetic modification (GM) techniques are providing access to a diversity of genes, used to develop plant varieties more tolerant to the negative impacts of climate change.

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