QCan the act of some farmers planting GMOs negatively affect the ability of other farmers to practice organic farming?

Can the act of some farmers planting GMOs negatively affect the ability of other farmers to practice organic farming?

AExpert Answer

One of the great things about farming is our ability to grow many different crops, while at the same time having the choices to raise them in different fashions, with or without biotech in the crops, especially in crops like corn. This can also be challenging as we have to work with our neighbors to make sure what we are growing doesn't cause a negative effect on what they are growing. This can happen in many different instances. 


We raise production seed corn, which is the corn that will be planted by farmers next year. Having a farmer grow white corn, popcorn and sweet corn, for example, too close to those fields can have a negative impact on the quality of corn that will be planted the next year. This means we have to talk to our neighbors to see what they are growing to make sure we have the proper distance from those corn crops, like popcorn, so there isn't an issue. The same is true when dealing with neighbors who have adopted organic crop practices. They will reach out to see what is next to them to make sure there is not an issue that may cause some of their product to be rejected, as they try to maintain a pure organic standard.  


The main issue is that all of us in the farming community need to learn to communicate what we are doing so we can co-exist no matter what our cropping practices.

Posted on July 30, 2018
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Posted on March 9, 2018
Thanks for the question. I believe you are asking about how corn hybrids are produced. For starters, corn plants have both female (silks and cobs) and male parts (tassels). This means that in a field of corn, any plant can fertilize any other plant (hybrid), including itself (inbred).   Breeders create new hybrids by cross pollinating genetics of a specific male inbred (plants with uniform performance) with a specific female inbred. This is done by planting one row of the male... Read More
Posted on May 4, 2018
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