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Agri-Pulse reports:

Most people don't understand that about 1,200 registration studies are required before a new active ingredient can be considered for use on crops. Part of the problem is that the research is kept confidential to protect intellectual property.

But today, Bayer is launching a new transparency website that the company says will enable much greater access to the scientific data needed for the evaluation of plant protection products. The company aims to strike a balance between their desire to be more open with the public while ensuring that business confidential information does not fall into the hands of competitors.

In addition to summaries of safety-related study reports for a significant number of active substances, Bayer will begin enabling non-commercial access to the respective safety-related study reports, starting with reports on imidacloprid, a systemic insecticide that belongs to a class of chemicals called the neonicotinoids.

"As conflicting accounts about the safety of food or technologies are making it difficult for people to separate fact from fiction, this Bayer initiative is an important step towards increased transparency," said Adrian Percy, global head of research and development for Bayer's crop science division.

Percy says he want non-commercial interested parties - from a concerned citizen to a member of the scientific community - to be able to access safety-relevant information in a way that is quick and easy to understand and based on science.

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