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USDA releases crop report

(March 28, 2002 – CropChoice news) – The results of a survey from the USDA indicate that U.S. farmers this year will sow more genetically modified corn, soybeans and cotton than last year. The report did not show any farmer intention to grow other transgenic crop varieties.

Farmers reported that they intend to plant corn that the biotechnology industry genetically modified to contain the borer caterpillar-killing bacterium, bacillus thuringiensis (Bt), on more than 25 million acres. This would account for 32 percent of the total crop, up from 25 percent a year ago.

When it comes to soybeans, growers say that they’ll plant the Roundup Ready variety on 54 million acres, almost 75 percent of the total soybean acreage; this is up from 68 percent a year ago. Monsanto, with generous help from taxpayer-funded universities, designed (and then patented) the seeds to resist the herbicide Roundup (glyphosate).

About 10.5 million acres of cotton – 71 percent of the crop – will be sown with transgenic varieties this year.

Source: USDA (National Agricultural Statistics Service: http://www.nass.usda.gov)