It is often referred to as the “Nobel Prize for Food and Agriculture.” Today, the 2019 World Food Prize Laureate was named in Washington, D.C. This year’s honoree is Simon N. Groot of the Netherlands.
Simon Groot is the founder of East -West Seed and his work is being called, “transformative”. He has worked to develop varieties of vegetables which are more resistant to disease and are capable of higher yields. Through his work, these seeds have been distributed to small farmers in over 60 countries, especially in Southeast Asia and Latin America.
His work has spread across four decades and has benefitted over 20 million smallholder farmers. He has worked to educate many of these farmers on the best practices to use to gain the most from the seeds’ potential. This education has turned farming from just a way of life for these people to a successful business for these producers.
Groot says he is honored to have his work recognized. He says it has momentum that will not stop, but he is also just getting started.
Simon Groot will receive the World Food Prize at a ceremony in the Iowa State Capitol building on October 17th.