GMO COMPASS - Information on genetically modified organisms
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Cultivation of GM plants:
Rapid increase worldwide, cautious start in Europe

In 1996, the first genetically modified seeds were planted in the United States for commercial use. In the meanwhile, genetically modified crops were grown on 174 million hectares worldwide. Comparison: The total acreage in Germany is 35 million hectares.


Tendency increasing further: GM plants on 174 million hectares worldwide in 2013
The cultivation of genetically modified plants worldwide also increased in 2013. In comparison to 2012, field area increased by five million hectares to 174 million. In the case of soybean, 79 percent of world production is achieved with GM soy and this figure is 32 percent in the case of maize.



Cultivation 2009: Field area for Bt maize decreases

The field area for genetically modified plants in the European Union decreased further in 2009. In France and Germany, national cultivation bans for genetically modified Bt maize (MON810) were enacted in 2009. In the meanwhile, stricter co-existence regulations apply in almost all EU member states.



Spain: Bt maize prevails

Bt maize has been grown in Spain since 1998. In 2009, 79 000 hectares were cultivated with Bt-maize. In regions suffering from heavy pest infestations Bt-maize has established itself with almost blanket coverage. There it is not only economically attractive but has also reduced the use of insecticides.



Soy, maize, cotton and rapeseed: The big four
Soy, maize, cotton, and rapeseed account for almost all commercial GMO production. GM plants are grown mainly in North and South America, but increasingly also in India, China and South Africa.

Area under crops and cultivating countries:






Cultivation in the USA in 2009: The trend for genetically modified plants remains steady
In the USA the farmers are still committed to green gene technology. For soya and sugar beet, in 2009 genetically modified varieties represented over 90% of the total; for maize and cotton it was a little lower. Overall, the acreage under GM crop plants increased by 5% to over 62 million hectares.



An EU Research Project

What are the risks of growing GM crops?

What are the benefits?

Numerous studies have addressed the potential impacts of genetically modified (GM) plants. Yet the existing evidence on the effects of GM plants is often contradictory and the quality of scientific research varies widely.

Therefore, the GRACE project will establish new tools for assessing the quality of existing studies and will conduct comprehensive reviews to identify health, environmental and socio-economic impacts of GM plants.

More information

 GM Crops: Specific Information and Future Projects
March 29, 2010 [nach oben springen]

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