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who benefits from gm crops? the rise of pesticide use

Biotechnology proponents claim that genetically modified (GM) crops are good for consumers, farmers and the environment, and that they are growing in popularity around the world. However, such claims are seldom subjected to scrutiny. Beginning in 2006, Friends of the Earth International has released a publication each year on the impact of GM crops.

who benefits from gm crops?Like its predecessors, the 2008 report, “Who Benefits from GM Crops? The Rise in Pesticide Use” provides a fact-based assessment of GM crops around the world, and addresses common misconceptions about their impacts. In the 2008 edition, we report on new trends and findings, particularly the rise in pesticide use with GM crops.

The report has been downloaded 4339 times in English alone from the Friends of the Earth International website. It is available in English, French, Spanish, Georgian, Russian, Armenian and Azerbaijan and has been widely distributed by our member groups around the world. FoE Georgia for example has been involved in the “Who Benefits” series for years, and translated the publication in support of their call for a GM-Free Georgia. In March 2009, during a session of the Christian Democrats in Parliament on food safety, the Minister of Agriculture agreed with the assessment of FoE Georgia of the risks and expressed the political will of Georgian government to declare the country GM-Free.

The report was intentionally launched on the same day as an industry report released by the biotech lobby association ISAAA. Largely as a result of FoEI media work, most news items described ISAAA as an "industry organization that promotes GM crops" instead of an "independent non profit organization" as they did in the past. Most of the media stories about the two reports included a critical view of ISAAA, and included quotes from the FoEI report. In general, many major newpapers covered the launch of our report, and academics, politicians and non-governmental organizations used it in their research, positioning and campaigning.

 

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