Wheat researchers have discovered a combination of genes that provide resistance to the significant fungal disease Stagonospora nodorum blotch (SNB) in WA varieties.
A new report from the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology (CAST) offers a primer on the science of genome editing, along with potential applications and challenges.
Biotech Crop Adoption Leads to Greater Sustainability and Socioeconomic Opportunities for Global Farmers and Citizens
Two new studies show continued environmental and social benefits of biotech crop use and adoption
(June 26, 2018) – Today, the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications (ISAAA) and PG Economics, Ltd. released new studies highlighting the continued social, environmental and economic benefits of the global adoption of biotechnology in agriculture. Read more
Through modification of endogenous citrus genes, problems in citrus greening may be solved.
The Gene Editing Research Laboratory of the University of Connecticut teamed up with the University of Florida to resolve the predominant citrus greening problem in the United States through gene modification enabling citruses to resist the greening disease.
Swaziland and Ethiopia joined other member states of the Common Market of Eastern and Southern Africa (COMESA) in the cultivation of genetically modified (GM) cotton after receiving the go signal from environmental agencies.
As the world’s population continue to grow at an alarming pace, from an estimated 9.7 billion in 2050 to 11.2 billion by 2100, so does the need to ensure food security especially for developing countries. Researchers now turn to biotechnology to address these concerns.
Genetic engineering is a powerful tool for developing future crops but before it is used for food, questions on its safety should be addressed and settled at the earliest, a high-powered official panel has recommended.
Women scientists are calling for the adoption of biotechnology to boost food security in the country.
Under the umbrella of Women for Biosciences Network, Dr Felister Makini, the deputy director general for crop research at the Kenya Agricultural and Livestock Research Organisation (Kalro) said that women scientists can play a bigger role in helping female farmers in rural areas understand the technologies and exploit them for food security.
The advent of genetically modified crops caused a scandal in the 1990s.
But the younger generation is largely relaxed about eating GM foods, new research has shown, as farmers called for a post-Brexit technology revolution.
A “LANDMARK opinion” from the European Court of Justice on the definition of genetically modified organisms could pave the way for a revival of crop biotechnology in Europe. Read more
The cost of current biotech industry regulations might not be obvious to consumers, but it’s clear to researchers. Read more
The Rome-based Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) of the United Nations estimates that up to 35 percent of the losses in the annual crop production worldwide are due to pests—insects, weeds, plant diseases, rodents and birds. Of the estimated 1 million insects in the world, between 150 and 200 species frequently cause serious damage to crops.
When losses due to pests are combined with postharvest losses, worldwide food losses would amount to 45 percent. “This is almost one half of the world’s potential food supply,” the FAO pointed out. Read more
18Scientists have said the first batch of locally grown genetically modified potatoes will be on sale in Ugandan markets in 2020.
Various key stakeholder groups: regulators, farmer leaders, students, scientists, academe, DA information officers, and members and officials of local government units of selected municipalities in Davao region in the Philippines learned about the science, food and environmental safety, and socioeconomic benefits of biotech crops, as well as the biosafetyregulatory guidelines in the country, during the Biotechnology 101 & Joint Department Circular (JDC) Public Briefing held on August 16, 2017 at The Pinnacle Hotel and Suites, Davao City.
SINGAPORE — Singapore might not be a rice-producing country, but that has not stopped it from contributing to research in the field. Read more
Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) crops now are being cultivated on 185.1 million hectares across world including the developing and the industrial countries.
SEARCA Director Dr. Gil C. Saguiguit, Jr. reiterated the increasing importance of safe, and evidence- and science-based agricultural technologies in promoting agricultural productivity and food and nutrition security amidst challenges like climate change, dwindling production resources, rapid population increase, and extreme poverty.
Among these technologies is biotechnology, including both traditional (e.g., selective breeding, fermentation techniques) and modern (i.e., genetic engineering) techniques, which the Center looks at as an important tool in addressing the abovementioned challenges. SEARCA particularly pushes for “coexistence,” which, according to a report of the US Department of Agriculture Advisory Committee on Biotechnology and 21st Century Agriculture, “is the concurrent cultivation of conventional, organic, identity preserved (IP) and genetically engineered crops consistent with underlying consumer preferences and farmer choices.”
Dr. Saguiguit made this statement following the Philippine launch of the annual report of the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications (ISAAA) on the global status of commercialized biotech crops. According to the ISAAA report, global planting of biotech crops reached 185.1 million hectares in 2016, which increased from 179.7 million hectares in 2015. A total of 26 countries grew biotech crops, including the Philippines, which planted around 812,000 hectares of biotech yellow corn last year. Biotech corn varieties, which are grown in the country since 2003, are pest resistant and herbicide tolerant, thus providing various documented benefits to Filipino farmers including significant increase in yield and reduction in production costs.
Dr. Saguiguit said that through SEARCA’s Tenth Five-Year Plan focused on Inclusive and Sustainable Agricultural and Rural Development (ISARD), the Center believes that due attention must be given to resource poor farmers by providing them access to information, best practices, and new technologies that will increase their farm productivity.
“Our goal is to give our farmers a fighting chance to cope with the many challenges and obstacles they face in farming. Through biotechnology and many other innovations, we hope to offer them better opportunities so that they can provide not only for their families but also contribute to the nation’s food security and overall development. Along these lines, SEARCA qualifies that it only promotes agricultural technologies and practices that are known to be safe and do not compromise human and environmental health,” said Dr. Saguiguit.
With the continuing opposition to biotechnology, Dr. Saguiguit said that it is all the more important for the public, particularly decision and policymakers, to understand the said technology in the context of scientific and empirical evidence.