Science & Technology

Hooray!—Milestone Two Billionth Acre of Biotech Crops Planted Last Year


The International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-Biotech Applications (ISAAA) has released its annual update of progress in adopting biotech crops around the world. The executive summary of this year's report notes that 25 countries (up 3 from 2007) now allow their farmers to plant biotech crops. In addition, ISAAA reports:

Notably, in 2008, accumulatively the second billionth acre (800 millionth hectare) of a biotech crop was planted—only 3 years after the first one-billionth acre of a biotech crop was planted in 2005. In 2008, developing countries out-numbered industrial countries by 15 to 10, and this trend is expected to continue in the future with 40 countries, or more, expected to adopt biotech crops by 2015, the final year of the second decade of commercialization….

In 2008, the number of farmers benefiting from biotech crops globally in 25 countries reached 13.3 million, an increase of 1.3 million over 2007. Of the global total of 13.3 million beneficiary biotech farmers in 2008, (up from 12 million in 2007), remarkably over 90% or 12.3 million (up from 11 million in 2007) were small and resource-poor farmers from developing countries; the balance of 1 million were large farmers from both industrial countries such as the USA and Canada and developing countries such as Argentina and Brazil.

Think how much faster the benefits of modern biotech crops would have spread had there been no anti-scientific campaigns such as this one and this particularly self-serving one

See whole ISAAA report here