Plant Biotechnology in Argentina Increases Production Efficiency and Lowers Costs for Farmer

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Madero describes benefits of genetically modified organisms in online video and podcast.

What I would like to do the most is increase production efficiency and to keep lowering the cost. And, thanks to biotechnology, we are able to achieve this

In 2005, farmers increased plantings of biotechnology in Argentina, planting approximately 42 million acres (17 million hectares) of genetically modified (GM) soybeans, corn and cotton. Since first planting crops developed through biotechnology in Argentina in 1996, growers have rapidly increased plantings and become the second largest producer of GM crops globally, largely due to costs saving and farm income benefits.

“What I would like to do the most is increase production efficiency and to keep lowering the cost. And, thanks to biotechnology, we are able to achieve this,” says Argentine farmer Andrés Fernandez Madero, who has realized the benefits of genetically modified organisms in both soybeans and corn since 1998.

The planting of GM crops has enabled Argentine farmers like Madero to adopt no-till or reduced tillage systems and to cultivate two crops in one season. “Direct sowing, biotechnology, rotation – all this has lowered our costs. But it’s not all about numbers. Since the fields are cleaner, we use fewer pesticides. The growth of weeds has been considerably reduced. The consumption of herbicide has been reduced to 50 percent less than what we used before,” continues Madero.

Madero describes these and other benefits of genetically modified organisms in an exclusive video and podcast available at the Conversations about Plant Biotechnology Web site: http://www.monsanto.com/biotech-gmo/default.asp. In addition to Madero’s video, visitors can view conversations with two of his fellow Argentine farmers — Johnny Avellaneda and Rodolfo Tosar.

Conversations about Plant Biotechnology is designed to give a voice and a face to the farmers and families who grow biotech crops and the experts who research and study the technology. The Web site contains more than 40, two- to three-minute, extremely candid, straightforward and compelling video segments with the people who know the technology best. The Web site also contains an exclusive video and podcast. The Web site is hosted by Monsanto Company -- a leading global provider of technology-based solutions and agricultural products that improve farm productivity and food quality.

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Ranjana Smetacek
Monsanto
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