KWS SAAT SE & Co. KGaA is a seed production and sales company focusing on maize, sugar beet and cereals, but also other plants. KWS was founded in 1856, and its headquarters are located in Einbeck, Germany. The 2017/2018 revenue of the company was more than one billion euros, and the total earnings before interest and taxes was approximately €133 million. KWS has more than 5000 employees, almost 2000 of whom are R&D staff, demonstrating the importance KWS places on the constant improvement of its products. KWS breeding and sales operations take place in more than 70 countries. The core markets are Europe, the Americas and China.

Role in Photoboost

KWS will lead WP4, organising the potato cultivation work and ultimately cultivating the best performing varieties (in terms of yield and morphology) from other work packages under near-to-field (potato) and field (rice) conditions to demonstrate the efficiency of each photosynthesis improvement strategy. Potato varieties will be cultivated under near-to-field conditions in Einbeck on KWS premises, whereas rice will be cultivated on field sites at UdL and IRRI.


Frank Ludewig

Selected publications

Koch W, Kwartz M, Laubner M, Heineke D, Stransky H, Frommer WB, Tegeder M (2003) Reduced amino acid content in transgenic potato tubers due to antisense inhibition of the leaf H+/amino acid symporter StAAP1. The Plant Journal 33, 211–220.

Peterhaensel C, Niessen M, Kebeish RM (2008) Metabolic engineering towards the enhancement of photosynthesis. Photochemistry and Photobiology 84, 1317–1323.

Zhang L, Haeusler RE, Greiten C, Hajirezaei M-R, Haferkamp I, Neuhaus HE, Fluegge U-I, Ludewig F (2008) Overriding the co-limiting import of carbon and energy into tuber amyloplasts increases the starch content and yield of transgenic potato plants. Plant Biotechnology Journal 6, 453–464.

Jonik C, Sonnewald U, Hajirezaei M-R, Fluegge U-I, Ludewig F (2012) Simultaneous boosting of source and sink capacities doubles tuber starch yield of potato plants. Plant Biotechnology Journal 10, 1088–1098.

Jung B, Ludewig F, Schulz A, Meissner G, Woestefeld N, Fluegge U-I, Pommerrenig B, Wirsching P, Sauer N, Koch W, Sommer F, Muehlhaus T, Schroda M, Cuin TA, Graus D, Marten I, Hedrich R, Neuhaus HE (2015) Identification of the transporter responsible for sucrose accumulation in sugar beet taproots. Nature Plants 1, 14001.

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