19, 2005: Local growers in drought-stricken
Brazil have reported that genetically modified soy yields
have dropped more significantly than yields of conventional
varieties. The official line has been that the conventional
varieties have been adapted to the region while the
transgenic crops were largely smuggled into the country
and are therefore not attuned to the local climate.
(Critics of genetic engineering have said the engineered
crops don’t stand up to drought because they overproduce
lignan, which makes them brittle and woody.) Whatever
the reason for the poor performance, farmers have begun
to the horde the drought-superior conventional seed
leading to what many predict will be a shortage of conventional
soy seed in southern Brazil next year.
For more on this story, go to: http://www.ipsnews.net/interna.asp?idnews=28105.