University of Canterbury researchers have found that the biotechnologies used in north American staple crop production are lowering yields and increasing pesticide use compared to western Europe.
A conspicuous difference is the adoption of genetically modified/engineered (GM) seed in North America, and the use of non-GM seed in Europe.
"We found that the combination of non-GM seed and management practices used by western Europe is increasing corn yields faster than the use of the GM-led packages chosen by the US."
The study, published in the journal Nature Biotechnology, looks at so-called Bt corn and cotton -- plants modified to exude Bacillus thuringiensis, a bacterium toxic to insects. U.S. and French researchers analyzed a total of 77 studies of 13 major pests covering eight countries on five continents. Five species were considered resistant by 2011, compared with only one in 2005, the study found.
Today the Italian Health minister required that the authorization of the cultivation of GM maize (technical name Mon810) should be immediately suspended in Italy and all other European countries. This is a reaction to a scientific report by the Italian Agricultural Research Council (CRA) about the insecticide producing GM maize. This announcement moves Italy closer to the bans of the GM maize from seven other European countries (Austria, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Luxembourg and Poland), and it is the result of the Italian public rejection which unites farmers , consumers, environmentalist from all the country.
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About the Stop the Crop campaign
This website and film present some of the dangers of GM-crops, and call for people across Europe and beyond to take action to stop them. We need a future of food and farming that benefits people and planet, and not the pockets of big business. We need to stop GM-crops from spreading across Europe. You can sign up for updates and alerts opposite.