December 17, 2018
Hi Fidelity Genetics Raises $8.5M to Improve Plant Breeding With AI
Cross breeding plants is a time-tested practice for producing hybrids with higher crop yields. But finding the plant parents with the genetics that will generate the best hybrid takes time.
Hi Fidelity Genetics says its artificial intelligence approach speeds up the process and reduces costs.
As Hi Fidelity ramps up its research and development, the Durham, NC-based startup has raised $8.5 million in Series A financing. Fall Line Capital and Finistere Ventures co-led the funding. Breeders are normally interested in traits that will make a plant hardier in tougher conditions, which can boost the chances for higher yields. Hi Fidelity is primarily focused on breeding plants with stronger roots that will also respond under quite dry conditions. This is important because crop yields and prices become more volatile with climate change, as well as the main factor affecting yield from one year to the next is the availability of water, said company co-founder Philip Benfey, a Duke University biology professor, during a North Carolina Biotechnology Center forum in March where he talked about Hi Fidelity.
[Originally posted by Xconomy— December 13, 2018]