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Pairwise and Bayer expand CRISPR leafy greens market through licensing agreement

crispr leafy greens
Pairwise has entered into an exclusive product licensing agreement with Bayer to further develop and sell the products at scale. 

Durham, N.C., (May 28, 2024) – Pairwise, a company pioneering genetics-based innovation in food and agriculture, launched the first CRISPR food in North America last year – its leafy greens blend, edited with CRISPR for improved flavor. Starting this month, as the next phase of commercialization, Pairwise has entered into an exclusive product licensing agreement with Bayer to further develop and sell the products at scale. 

With higher nutrition compared to lettuce, the leafy greens are a mixture of multi-use mustard green varieties that Pairwise edited using the company’s proprietary Fulcrum™ Platform. By dialing down the wasabi-like flavor of the raw leaves, Pairwise created a new product for consumers who prefer a less-pungent taste but still want the nutrition of fresh mustard greens. 

This licensing deal is part of Bayer’s new open innovation approach, launched to leverage opportunities for genome edited fruits and vegetables. The agreement allows Bayer to further develop and commercialize 10 varieties of Pairwise-edited greens, and to develop and breed for new varieties with the technology. 

“We’re extremely proud to have introduced the first CRISPR food in North America last year, demonstrating our ability to deliver a unique product that people want to buy,” said Tom Adams, Pairwise Co-Founder and CEO. “Bayer is a strong partner for this licensing agreement with considerable market reach that we feel can extend the impact and success of our first consumer product widely into the marketplace.” 

“This agreement and its focus on gene edited produce made a substantial contribution to our open innovation approach,” said JD Rossouw, Head of Vegetables Research & Development at Bayer’s Crop Science division. “We are excited by the potential for these products developed by Pairwise as we bring them forward to create a new category of nutritious and great-tasting leafy greens.” 

Major innovations in produce, including baby carrots and easy-peel mandarins, have delivered significant consumer benefits such as improving the enjoyment, convenience, and snackability of healthy foods. In addition to successfully introducing the nutritious mustard greens with improved flavor, Pairwise is using CRISPR to accelerate more of these game-changing products across food and agriculture.  

About Pairwise: 

Pairwise is pioneering the application of CRISPR technology in food and agriculture. The company brings together leaders in agriculture, technology, and consumer foods to harness the transformative potential of new genomics technologies to create innovative new products. Pairwise is working to develop new varieties of crops, and to partner with organizations that seek to deliver innovation across the plant-based economy.Backed by industry leading investors Deerfield, Aliment Capital, Leaps by Bayer, and Temasek, Pairwise raised $90 million in a successful series B funding round in February 2021, bringing total fundraising to $115 million. The company was founded by Chief Executive Officer Tom Adams and Chief Business Officer Haven Baker, with scientific co-founders J. Keith Joung, Lead Translator at Arena BioWorks; David Liu, Director of the Merkin Institute of Transformative Technologies in Healthcare, and Vice-Chair of the Faculty at the Broad Institute of Harvard and MIT; and Feng Zhang, McGovern Investigator and a professor at MIT. For more information, visit?, and learn more about the differentiating Pairwise Fulcrum™Platform here