Originally Posted by IKIGAI
The GM crops -- let's look at GM Bt maize and GM Bt cotton here -- are genetically modified to be pesticide (which includes all herbicides) resistant; to be correct, and I'll use one industry brand name here, they are GM Roundup Ready crops.
The crops themselves are not any more resistant to insect or competitive weed infestations, and were in fact designed primarily to be insecticide saturation resistant.
These GM crops were designed to be used in conjunction WITH pesticide use, and that use is increasing dramatically -- not decreasing.
In fact, American farms have applied 318 million more pounds of pesticide over the last 13 years of GM commercially sourced seeds.
In 2008 alone, GM crops required 26% more pounds of pesticide per acre, than fields planted with non-GM seed varieties.
And it's going to get nothing but worse from here on in -- most GM seed varieties are never allowed to naturally mutate and build a resistance to insects.
The weeds the pesticide/herbicides are applied to however, do mutate and have built up an alarming resistance to RoundUp.
This has led to Dow's development of a pesticide which now contains among other chemicals, 2,4-D34 which is a principle ingredient of the defoliant called 'Agent Orange'.
And last year Dow applied to the USDA to commercialize a 2,4-D tolerant GM Corn.
I said insecticides, you said pesticides into which are lumped all chemicals applied to a crop. The various Bt GMO crops don't need insecticides to combat their primary insect pests. The beauty of this is that benefical bug populations don't get hammered by insecticides which then leads to a cycle of ever more insecticide applications....especially in cotton. We grow all GMO cotton, but we chose the GMO traits we need. Weed control is important so we select glyphosate tolerant varieties for all our fields and where we have particular weed issues we select seed that is resistant to 2 different herbicides. We don't use Bt genetics on all our cotton or corn acres because we don't need to. Cotton boll worms and corn ear worms, the same critter, no longer overwhelm the beneficial insects in our region because we no longer have to spray insecticides to control those guys. It's the ultimate Integrated Pest Mamagement system.
Btw, corn is naturally tolerant to 2,4-D as are wheat mad grain sorgum. 2,4-D kicks broad leaf plants in the nutz though. Weeds and insects continually evolve to changing environmental pressure, that's nothing new and only an idiot would expect a pesticide to remain viable indefinitely.
And what's this bullshit about "mutate to build a natural resistance to insects"? You must be insane. That is one of the dumber things I've read here and that is really saying something.