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Fight to ban GM feed imports in EU labelled ‘scaremongering’

The fight against the importation of genetically-modified (GM) feed or food in Europe has been labelled as “scaremongering” and “a conspiracy theory” by a prominent European Commissioner.   Speaking to AgriLand, Vytenis Andriukaitis, the EU Commissioner for Health and Food Safety, defended the EU’s position as the world’s second-largest importer of GM soybean, which is mostly used for...

Parasitic plants use stolen genes to make them better parasites

Some parasitic plants steal genetic material from their host plants and use the stolen genes to more effectively siphon off the host’s nutrients. A new study by researchers at Penn State, Virginia Tech, and Kennesaw State University reveals that the parasitic plant dodder has stolen a large amount of genetic material from its hosts, including...

Grow Faster, Grow Stronger: Speed-Breeding Crops to Feed the Future

Plant breeders are fast-tracking genetic improvements in food crops to keep pace with global warming and a growing human population.   Farmers and plant breeders are in a race against time. The world population is growing rapidly, requiring ever more food, but the amount of cultivable land is limited. Warmer temperatures have extended growth seasons in some...

Nigeria Approves Two GMO Cotton Varieties to Increase Output

Nigeria approved two genetically modified varieties of cotton for use by the nation’s farmers to help boost supply to its textile industry and cut lint imports of as much as 115 billion naira ($319 million) a year, officials said.   The strains were modified by the Institute of Agricultural Research at the Ahmadu Bello University in the...

The quest to save the banana from extinction

Panama disease, an infection that ravages banana plants, has been sweeping across Asia, Australia, the Middle East and Africa. The impact has been devastating. In the Philippines alone, losses have totalled US$400m. And the disease threatens not only the livelihoods of everyone in this US$44 billion industry but also the 400m people in developing countries who...

Road to approval for US biotech crops in China beset with massive delays, costing industry billions

China’s approval process for biotech crops is beset by regulatory hurdles and delays that have cost U.S. companies billions of dollars and added to challenges for American farmers.   Industry groups and members of Congress have been urging the Trump administration to press China to make its regulatory process for approving agricultural biotech products more transparent and timely.   High-level...

Proper product called key to consumer GMO acceptance

WASHINGTON, D.C. — Jack Bobo doesn’t hold back when talking about the Arctic Apple.   He believes the non-browning apple could change how people think and talk about genetically modified food.   “I like to say it’s the most important GMO in the history of the world,” said Bobo, vice-president of global policy and government affairs with Intrexon,...

Govt committed to ensuring availability of nutritious food: Minister

Agriculture Minister Dr Abdur Razzaque on Wednesday said the government has come up with hybrid varieties including GMOs to ensure availability of safe and nutritious food.   The minister was speaking at a policy workshop titled ‘Agricultural Transformation in Bangladesh: Evidence on Biotechnology and Nutrition-Sensitive Agriculture’ at Hotel Intercontinental Dhaka.   The programme was organised jointly by the Ministry...

Golden rice to be available soon: Minister

Golden rice, a new variety of rice enriched with Vitamin A will be available soon, said Agriculture Minister Dr Abdur Razzak.   He was talking to reporters after a meeting with International Rice Research Institute (IRRI) at the secretariat yesterday.   "Golden rice is more important than other varieties as it will help fight Vitamin A deficiency. The rice...

As Nigeria Makes Final Move To Commercialise Bt Cowpea

After nine years of intensive trials of the Bacillus thuringiences (Bt) cowpea (beans), Nigeria finally begins the final processes towards the commercialisation of the crop with a public presentation to get input from scientists, farmers, policy makers, civil society organisations, experts, faith-based organisations and the media.   The public presentation by the nation’s biotech regulatory agency, the National Biosafety...

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