University plant breeding clubs

A special feature of university clubs is the university ambience. Students are far more likely than amateurs to overcome the intimidation, and the initial hesitation about breeding crops for horizontal resistance. The students would do all the work of breeding, supervised and guided by a professor. This would provide them with the initial 'ice-breaking' and the essential 'hands-on' experience. The students would earn course credits from their club membership, and their teacher would earn teaching credits.

The main function of university breeding clubs is to teach. This teaching will promote a widespread proliferation of breeding clubs. Graduates, with life membership in their clubs, will either return to their family farms, or become agricultural scientists. If they become farmers, they might initiate one or more farmers' breeding clubs in their own locality. If they become scientists, they might initiate one or more private breeding clubs among concerned amateurs in the vicinity of their work. Or they may become entrepreneurs themselves, relying on breeder's royalties to earn a living.

In any event, both the concept and the practice of plant breeding clubs will begin to spread. As increasing proofs of the viability of horizontal resistance, and the ease and usefulness of amateur breeding, begin to accumulate, the proliferation of clubs will increase. The public interest in pure food, and a clean environment, to say nothing of the farmer interest in high yields and cheap production, is so strong that the process of growth and proliferation will increase rapidly.

That these developments have not occurred before now is due to a lack of knowledge. No member of the public was even aware of this possibility. The professional plant breeders, in their breeding institutes, have had no interest in promoting either amateur breeding or horizontal resistance. Indeed, they genuinely believed both to be impractical, if not impossible. And the chemical corporations, with their concept of crop protection chemicals substituting for host resistance, have also had no interest in promoting horizontal resistance.

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