News & Events
Smallholder farmers in developing countries are among the biggest beneficiaries of agricultural biotechnology, which continues to offer yield and environmental benefits around the globe.
That’s the conclusion of a highly-respected annual report released this week by PG Economics that documents the continued gains in yield and producer income, as well as reductions in pesticide use and greenhouse gas emissions, due to increasing adoption of genetically-modified (GM) technologies by farmers around the world.
The European Commission on April 24 approved 19 import authorizations for genetically modified organisms (GMOs). Seventeen of the authorizations were for long-delayed food and feed traits, already approved by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), but had been stalled by non-science based political objections.
Two additional approvals for genetically modified cut flowers rounded out the list.
A strong majority, 89 percent, of scientists believe genetically modified (GM) foods are safe, according to a Pew Research Center study on science literacy, undertaken in cooperation with the American Association for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) and released on Jan. 29.
The study examined the views of scientists compared to the general public on technical topics like GM foods and found sharp differences in opinion on many measures.
As word came that Chinese officials have given verbal approval for the biotech corn trait MIR 162, trade and agriculture stakeholders gathered this week in Chicago for the the U.S.-China Joint Commission on Trade and Commerce (JCCT) discussions.
Genetically modified (GM) crops continue to receive scientific acclaim for environmental sustainability, and farmers continue to increase their use of the technology worldwide. A recent German report showed that genetically modified crops have contributed to a 37 percent reduction in pesticide use and 22 percent higher yields.
Biotechnology benefits farmers and consumers worldwide, and innovation in plant science is essential to meet the world’s rapidly growing demand for food, said Dr. Howard Minigh, president and chief executive officer (CEO) of CropLife International, when he presented to the nearly 500 attendees of Export Exchange 2014 on Oct. 22.
Minigh addressed the crowd of international buyers and domestic traders gathered in Seattle, Washington, for the biennial conference meant to help the two constituencies build relationships to facilitate grain trade in the coming years.
The United States is the world’s leader in developing and adopting biotechnology to enhance the yield and quality of agricultural commodities. Despite the rapid adoption of genetic modified (GM) crops by farmers in many countries around the world, however, controversies about this technology continue.
To help evaluate the evidence about GM crops, a German report was recently published outlining the results of a meta-analysis of agronomic and economic impacts of GM crops.
“The World Trade Organization needs to be part of the solution on biotechnology trade disruptions,” said MAIZALL President and U.S. Grains Council Past Chairman Julius Schaaf. “To feed 9 billion people by 2050, and do it in the face of growing land, water and environmental constraints, producers need technology.
“But to keep advancing technology, we also need regulatory systems capable of proceeding in a timely, transparent and science based way. That’s why we’re here - to urge the WTO to be more engaged on asynchronous biotech approvals and their effects on global trade.”
Recently, Dr. Alison Van Eenennaam and research assistant Amy E. Young completed the most comprehensive study of genetically modified (GM) crops ever, set to be published in the Journal of Animal Science after Oct. 1. It represents the longest-term monitoring of the health-impact of GM crops in history as it examines at 29 years of livestock productivity and health data from both before and after the introduction of GM crops into animal feed formulations.