Agriculture Minister Matia Chowdhury has come down heavily on the protesters for their stance against the cultivation of genetically modified (GM) Bt Brinjal in Bangladesh.
She also alleged that some quarters were blindly opposing the cultivation of Bt Brinjal and filed cases against the introduction of the new crop in exchange for money from the pesticide companies [who would lose business because Bt crops use fewer pesticides].
She said this while addressing a seminar on Global Perspective of Biotech/GM Crops and its Contribution to Food Security and Poverty Alleviation at the auditorium of Bangladesh Agricultural Research Council. “Those who staged human chain are not accountable to people but we are,” she said adding that the GM variety was released after ensuring all kinds of safety measures. Referring to the survey of International Service for the Acquisition of Agri- Biotech Applications (ISAAA), Matia also said the use of pesticide reduces a total of 497 billion kg after cultivating biotech food grains in the world.
Biotech crop double the food production that may contribute to poverty alleviation, said Dr Clive James, Founder & Emeritus Chair, ISAAA while presenting his article on “Global perspective of Biotech/GM Crops: 2013” in the seminar. He said this technology will help farmers throughout the worlds produce higher yield while reducing pesticide use and soil erosion at the same time.
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