Economic and Ecological Implications

Will Biotechnology Benefit Farmers or Not?

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The most widely accepted benefits for farmers who choose to grow genetically modified crops are:
Increases in profit due to higher marketability and competitiveness
Simplification of techniques and products needed for farming
Contribution to relieving food shortages related to overpopulation (Kirschenmann, 1999)
Large biotechnology companies like, Monsanto, also publicize benefits such as erosion control with herbicide-resistant crops by avoiding tilling, reduced herbicide use, reduced insecticide use, and other benefits leading to fewer production costs and hopefully a greater output.

However, there are many economic and ecological concerns surrounding the choice to use transgenic crops. Jeremy Rifkin, president of Foundation on Economic Trends says, "Many farmers are unfortunately buying into the public relations and marketing hoopla of Monsanto and Novartis. I think they're going to find that there are serious problems with the crops" (Wadman, 1998). Other considerations of GM crops are the affects when introduced in developing countries.

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