Oregon produces some of the finest ingredients in the world (think: wheat, potatoes, hazelnuts, berries). Producing something new from those ingredients can add substantially to their value in the marketplace. For example, a good Oregon Pinot noir can increase the value of wine grapes eight-fold; artisan cheese can increase the value of milk ten-fold; and a craft microbrew can increase the value of hops and barley 30-fold.
Research adds market value to fine ingredients by improving crop varieties, extending freshness, and experimenting with stuff we might not think of as ingredients at all. One of those new ingredients is the beautiful seaweed pictured on our cover.
In this issue of Oregon’s Agricultural Progress, we explore how agricultural research is helping build new businesses and support economic development. With research capacity that spans the entire food system, and active programs to strengthen the workforce, the Agricultural Experiment Station is a key partner in building Oregon business.