Why is GMO important to farmers?
Submitted by: shemeatricelashaunmccoy
Expert response from Community Manager
Moderator for GMOAnswers.com
Friday, 12/28/2018 19:27
GMOs are one of modern agriculture’s many innovations and allow farmers to grow more food with fewer resources.
Genetically modified traits like insect-resistance and drought-resistance help to maximize yields and enable farmers to grow more food using less land and with fewer inputs like chemicals and fuel. Because of the superior weed control of genetically modified crops, farmers can till the soil much less often. That has led to improved soil health and water retention, reduced runoff, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions from agriculture. Additionally, genetically modified plants with more efficient use of nitrogen and other important nutrients mean less fertilizer is needed, saving farmers money and reducing the amount of fertilizer in the environment.
Amanda Zaluckyi, whose family farms corn and soybeans in Southwest Michigan, wrote this article on why farmers choose GMO crops. She states,
“We [farmers] always have the choice of non-GMO seeds. But farmers make the choice to plant and grow GMO crops because they recognize the benefits for their farms. Farmers know that GMOs lower pesticide use, promote sustainability, and increase yields. Research is consistent with these conclusions and what farmers have experienced on the farm.”
Farmer and RD Jennie Schmidt from Maryland, discusses how her family farm has practiced biotechnology farming (as well as other types) and what this farming system means and entails.
“Today’s modern agriculture has a lot of cross over with Holmgren’s 12 principles of permaculture. We as farmers, regardless of the method of farming we employ, are putting best management practices on the ground to ensure that our resource conservation efforts maximize our return on investment, meaning preservation of our land as the farm’s main asset for now and for the future. This means that by combining modern agricultural technology with the philosophy of soil health, resource conservation, and reducing our environmental impact, farmers have moved all types of farming systems along the sustainability continuum. Farming will always have impact, all human activity does, but what we as farmers strive for is to minimize that impact to the extent possible.”
Farmer Brian Scott also explains why he grows GMOs here.
We hope this answers your question, if you have any other questions about GMOs or biotechnology, please ask here!