We are a group of creative people who help organizations make their ideas beautiful.

A Different Farmer.

A New Bayer.

Preparing the Crop Science portfolio for a tailored future.

We started this process with a simple truth: The farmer of 2031 is not the farmer of today.

Life on the farm is changing, dramatically. Like entertainment (see: Netflix), transportation (hi, Uber) and countless other industries before it, agriculture is poised for a dynamic digital transformation. How farmers buy, what they buy, and what they need from partners like Bayer is already evolving.

We’ve been shaping that future, leading the march toward tailored solutions. Along the way, it became clear that the existing Crop Science portfolio brand design wasn’t helping. 

The Business Case for Better Design

Eventually, the transformation of agriculture will help make the farmer’s charge a little simpler. But right now, we’re in the messy part of category disruption. A surge in input innovation means the farmer has more choices, and decisions, than ever. New digital technologies are demanding new skill sets to effectively manage operations. “Easy” couldn’t be further from the truth.

That’s where design thinking can help, and it’s why simplicity and cohesiveness are at the center of our creative strategy. 

Design Thinking as the Foundation

Where are we in the process? 

We’re at a critical point where we need your perspective, expertise and feedback. For the last 8 weeks, we’ve continued to explore divergent design systems. We pushed ideas included in the original proposal. And created new ones. 

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The design options shared below are works-in-progress and highly confidential. Concepts have not been tested with customers or stakeholders, nor have they been approved by leadership. The transformation journey starts today with your constructive, critical input. 

Two design systems are rising to the top with a lot of promise for the future of the Crop Science portfolio. 

Below, you’ll be introduced to each one, hearing from the designers behind them and the Bayer colleagues collaborating on their development. We’ll also detail the evolution of input brand identities from independent Lighthouse status to integrated, tailored solutions.

Then, on February 14, you’re invited to help us keep making all of this even better.

The evolution of portfolio brand identities

It’s more than a collection. It’s a system.

The design options that follow depict representative Lighthouse brands, House brands and Tailored Solutions. And you’ll notice some changes in how those brands appear.

The updates are based on a work-in-progress approach to help brands that were conceived independently, and designed separately, come together.

This doesn’t happen all at once. It happens over time, on a spectrum.

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Every brand, or input, within the Crop Science portfolio is on this spectrum, but they’re not all in the same place. Brands may move faster, or slower, along the continuum based on market conditions. And the same brand may even be at different points in different regions.

Eventually, most brands (if not all) will make this journey. 

Concept One:
The Bayer Band

At the intersection of custom inputs and better outcomes, of digital tools and deeper insights, that’s where you’ll find Bayer.

The dynamic angle. It’s at the heart of the global Bayer design lexicon. Always rising, from left to right, it signifies forward momentum, progress and growth.

And it rarely acts alone. 

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A second dynamic angle joins the first, adding depth, energy and motion. In the intersection between the two lies the inspiration for the new Bayer Brand Band. Inputs and insights coming together. Seeds and chemistry. Genetics and agronomy. Farmers and Bayer.

As the lines come together and twist to form a dynamic band, they also establish a hierarchy. Ingredients on one side. The system — the Bayer brand – on the other. The aesthetic is precise and bold, yet organic, creating a fluid and versatile visual hallmark of the Bayer Crop Science portfolio. 

Intention and Potential: The Brand Band

Horizontal or vertical. Large print executions or small digital ones. The rules to the Bayer Brand Band are still in development, but it’s easy to see how the band could naturally extend from one execution to the next.

Concept Two:
The Bayer Code

A design system that’s built for a digital future, and works in a digital future.

Can the same dynamic angle that inspired Concept One work even harder? That’s the question that ignited the creative journey leading to The Bayer Code. 

The Origins of the Code

The Bayer Code is just that: a visual design language that can represent — through colors and angled hashes — any possible tailored combination of brands, inputs, insights, technologies, traits or services.

It IS a literal code. 

The color, location and orientation of the individual dashes can be custom to each brand or system ingredient, while at the same time, creating a consistent aesthetic that is instantly recognizable as Bayer in any medium. 

In the short term, the code will be largely representative. It will authentically translate to actual variables, but the function of the code may stop there.

In the long term, however, we envision a future where farmers and other stakeholders can scan the code with their native smartphone camera to reveal relevant complementary information specific to that precise code.

Whether it’s used to defend against counterfeit products or to educate on integrated, tailored approaches, the Bayer Code will increase in utility over the next 5–10 years. 

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The code “language” is still being developed, but it’s already inspiring to see the code infuse a variety of executions and tactics. 

It’s Almost Time to Workshop

Turning a great start into even better momentum for the new Crop Science Brand Design system.

What now? We push, challenge, debate and pressure test each design. We build upon them, making each one stronger in turn.

Maybe one of them will rise to the top. 

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We look forward to seeing you, sharing more of the art and science behind each system, and learning from your experience and perspectives. Specifically, we’d like to assess how each concept delivers on the following key metrics. Does the design:

• Simplify and clarify the customer experience
• Support and build the Bayer corporate brand
• Safeguard existing value of product brands
• Position Bayer for a post-transformation future
• Enable active, flexible portfolio management
• Help defend against digital disruption
• Create a striking brand presence and competitive edge

Thank you for taking the time to meet each design system and for your thoughtful contributions to the upcoming workshop. Should you have any questions in advance, please send us a note. 

Matthias Lindecke
Global Brand Marketing Lead / Bayer Crop Science

Tobias Sieger
Global Branding & Marketing Communications Manager / Bayer Crop Science