Wednesday 18 September 2002

GM Crops An 'Economic Disaster' In The US

Genetically modified crops have been an "economic disaster" in America, costing £8 billion in lost profits and higher subsidies since 1999, according to a report published yesterday.

The study by the Soil Association raises questions over the future of GM crops in Britain, currently undergoing their final round of farm-scale trials before the Government consults on their introduction.

According to the report, called Seeds of Doubt, almost every benefit claimed for GM crops did not stand up to examination. Farmers reported lower yields, continued dependency on chemical sprays and widespread GM contamination of non-GM and organic crops, which in turn damaged exports.

Based on interviews with academics, advisers, farmers and industry analysts in North America, it said that GM crops had delivered few, if any, of the economic benefits promised to farmers.

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