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Crop Biotech Update

Gene-edited Soybeans Being Harvested in the US

October 10, 2018

Farmers in three US states are harvesting 16,000 acres (~6,475 hectares) of soybeans developed through gene editing technique. The soybeans are expected to be sold to consumers for use in frying oil, salad dressings, and granola bars. It is the first commercialized crop in the US developed using the new promising technique.

In March 2018, US Agriculture Secretary, Sonny Perdue, issued a statement that products of new breeding innovations such as genome editing will not be regulated because there are no risks present in using the techniques. According to Perdue, the new techniques expand traditional plant breeding tools because they can introduce new characteristics precisely and rapidly, making improved crops available to farmers earlier than using other techniques.

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