I’m combining my work with my farm knowledge- what little bit I have- this week. As farmers hit the field to plant their fall crops, I am doing my research on genetically engineered (GE) seeds. According to research, about 50 percent of the country’s cropland is planted with GE seed varieties. Many producers look to modified crops for pest control, weed control and drought control. GE crops can improve yields while decreasing the amount of time producers have to spend in the field.
Next week, the U.S. Supreme Court will hear its first biotech case. Monsanto, with the backing of several agricultural interest groups, is hoping to overturn a lower court ruling that granted an injunction to organic alfalfa producers and environmental groups that believe the USDA did not do its due diligence and conduct an environmental impact report before de-regulating Roundup Ready Alfalfa.
The clash comes from environmental groups that believe modified crops pose harm to the environment and consumers’ health.
Many agricultural groups support the use of GE crops as they help improve productivity and help tackle the world’s food shortage. I believe there is a place for GE crops. We already enjoy many GE foods- fruits and vegetables- and more GE crops can help producers be more efficient and product a more reliable crop year after year.
The Supreme Court is expected to render its decision by June.