Independent Expert

Steve Savage

Consultant, Savage & Associates

Steve Savage has more than 30 years of experience in agricultural technology having worked in academics (Colorado State University), at a global research company (DuPont), at a biotechnology start-up (Mycogen), and for the last 16 years as a consultant. Over the years, his research and consulting topics have ranged from biological control to crop protection chemicals (synthetic and natural product based); traits based on advances from traditional genetics to biotechnology; and crops from grains to specialty fruits and vegetables. He has also worked extensively on bio-fuels, fertilizers and on footprints of farming (carbon, water, energy and land-use).

From this Expert

Posted On: Tuesday, 7/30/2013 9:31 pm
A: First of all, no organisms have ever been modified to produce Roundup (glyphosate). Several crops have been modified with a minimally altered version of one of their existing enzymes (EPSPS) which makes them tolerant to that herbicide, but they don't make it. Second, regulatory agencies around the world don't base their decisions on “anecdotal evidence,” no matter how much is available. They stick to solid science. The consensus among regulators is quite clear that glyphosate has no real... Continue Reading
Posted On: Monday, 7/29/2013 3:13 pm
A: Plants can only pollinate members of their own species or sometimes very closely related species.  It is relatively easy to know whether there are any "outcrossing issues" with a new GM plant.  This is one of the issues that the USDA considers whenever it approves of outdoor trials with new GM crops and when it makes the final "deregulation" decision.  Of course, GM versions of a crop can cross pollinate non-GM versions of the same crop, but this is nothing new to... Continue Reading
Posted On: Wednesday, 7/10/2013 9:35 am
A: This is a great question. Let me start by providing a bit of historical context. Most industries that are regulated have a history of past environmental or health problems that precipitated the need for governmental oversight in the first place. In the case of crops improved by biotechnology, the regulations were put in place well before any such crops were commercialized, with the express purpose of ensuring that this promising technology would not cause problems. The scientific... Continue Reading
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