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GM cotton slashes agchem use in Burkina Faso

The planting of genetically modified insect-resistant cotton in Burkina Faso cuts insecticide use by two-thirds, according to a recent study. Researchers from US Oklahoma State University’s agriculture department analysed the results from field trials of Monsanto’s Bollgard II cotton in the west African country. The researchers found the use of the GM cotton was profitable throughout a range of “theoretical technology premiums” of $0-75/ha, with gains to farmers of $79-154/ha. They also noted “relatively low pest densities” present at the research sites. The study’s findings have been published in the September/October issue of the US journal, Crop Science. Burkina Faso started planting GM insect-resistant cotton for commercial use earlier this year and has conducted trials with Monsanto since 2003 ( Agrow No 550, p 21).

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