Crop Biotech Update

Indian Farmers Lose Opportunity to Benefit from Bt Brinjal as GEAC Halts Field Trials

April 21, 2021

The Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) has ceased the field trials of Bt brinjal and other transgenic crops in India due to the unwillingness of some states to cooperate and with the pressure of some non-governmental organizations.

"We are disappointed by the Ministry of Environment, Forest and Climate Change's regressive decision to not go ahead with the Bt Brinjal field trials or any other GM crop trials without considering the recommendations from States and Union Territories. This further complicates the already cumbersome process of conducting field trials of transgenic crops in India," said Dr. Shivendra Bajaj, Executive Director of The Federation of Seed Industry of India (FSII). "If we do not use GM technology, we will lose opportunities to save water and reduce fertilizer and pesticide consumption. This is a huge setback for science and technology in agriculture. Most importantly, it puts the Indian farmers at the grave risk of becoming uncompetitive in the international markets," added Ram Kaundinya, Director General of FSII.

For more details, read the news releases in The Genetic Literacy Project and Business Today.

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