What is in this article?:
- Potatoes next in line for biotech revolution
- Organic farmers: Nothing to fear
- Consumers are going to love what biotechnology can do for potatoes. Not only will GM potatoes look and taste better than the conventional varieties we already love–they’re going to be healthier as well.
Organic farmers: Nothing to fear
Yet organic potato producers have nothing to fear from pollen drift because commercial potatoes reproduce from cuttings of tuber, not seeds. Although potato plants will bloom with flowers, they reproduce on farms in a completely different way. So pollen drift between organic, conventional or biotech potatoes is of no concern.
The biotech revolution has improved our stewardship of the environment. Now that we’ve had more than 15 years of experience with GM crops, we see the advantages plainly. Productivity has gone through the roof, allowing us to grow more food on less land. We’ve cut back on tillage, conserving soil. We’ve also reduced our reliance on herbicides. Because of all this, GM crops are an essential component of sustainable agriculture–and the advent of biotech potatoes marks another step in the right direction.
This extraordinary crop, with its benefits for the environment, consumers, and farmers is now in the midst of regulatory approval. So, here’s my two cents: Welcome to the biotech revolution, potatoes. It’s about time.
Duane Grant grows potatoes, malt barley, sugar beets, corn, dry beans, alfalfa, wheat and onion seed on a family farm in Idaho. Mr. Grant is a member of the TATT Global Farmer Network. www.truthabouttrade.org.