Report Shows Biotech Crop Varieties Continue to be Preferred By U.S. Farmers

Farmer Gene

Tom Saidak reported for BioBased Digest on the latest U.S. adoption data for genetically engineered varieties of corn, cotton and soybeans.

In Washington, BIO commented on the USDA’s Economic Research Service Report, Genetically engineered varieties of corn, upland cotton, and soybeans, by State and for the Unites States, 2000-14. Key findings for 2014 included 94 percent of all soybeans grown in the U.S., 93 percent of all corn, and 96 percent of all cotton are genetically engineered. Dr. Cathleen Enright, Executive Vice President for Food and Agriculture for BIO, issued in part, the following statement in response to the report’s findings:

“The latest USDA adoption data for genetically engineered crops confirms that U.S. growers continue to choose seeds improved through biotechnology – particularly cotton, soybeans and corn seed varieties.

“Scientific innovation and seed technology allow growers to produce the most reliable and abundant yields with less tilling of the soil and fewer applications of insecticides. These practices promote environmental sustainability, reduce on-farm fuel use, increase profit margins for U.S. farming families and keep food costs affordable for U.S. consumers.”

The report summarizes the extent of adoption of herbicide-tolerant and insect–resistant crops since their introduction in 1996. Three tables within the report devoted to corn, cotton, and soybeans cover the 2000-14 period by U.S. state.  It is posted on the USDA-ERS website at http://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/adoption-of-genetically-engineered-crops-in-the-us.aspx#.U8fhiJRdV8E.

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