Dr. Stuart Smyth

Independent Expert

Dr. Stuart Smyth

Assistant Professor, Department of Bioresource Policy, Business and Economics, University of Saskatchewan

Dr. Stuart Smyth is an assistant professor in the Department of Bioresource Policy, Business and Economics at the University of Saskatchewan. He is part of a group of academics that received $5.4 million in funding in 2009 from Genome Canada to examine the genomic, economic, environmental, ethical, legal and social (GE³LS) issues pertaining to bioproducts and biofuels. His research focuses on innovation and agriculture and the resulting impacts. Part of this research was compiled in a 2010 book published by Edward Elgar titled, Innovation and Liability in Biotechnology: Transnational and Comparative Perspectives. He is currently involved in the production of three books that will be published in 2014: co-author of Plant Biotechnology: Principles & Practices, to be published by Wiley-Blackwell; co-editor of Handbook on Agriculture, Biotechnology and Development, to be published by Edward Elgar; and co-editor of Socio-Economic Considerations in Biotechnology Regulation, to be published by Springer.

From this Expert

Posted on July 21, 2017
Response from Dr. Stuart Smyth, Assistant Professor, Department of Bioresource Policy, Business and Economics, University of Saskatchewan • July 21, 2017
Food production is affected by numerous factors, such as the amount of rain the crop receives, the quality of the soil, the number of weeds that compete for soil nutrients and moisture and the number of insects that feed on the crop. GMOs can’t address all of these factors, but they can address two important ones: weeds and insects.   Each weed that grows in a field takes soil nutrients and moisture away from a food plant. The more resources that are used by weeds, the less food... Read More
Posted on July 21, 2017
Response from Dr. Stuart Smyth, Assistant Professor, Department of Bioresource Policy, Business and Economics, University of Saskatchewan • July 21, 2017
No single crop or food production method is capable of feeding the world on its own, so no, GMOs by themselves will not feed the world. However, as part of a global strategy to improve global food security, GMOs can have a tremendously positive contribution to feeding the world.   Current food production methods result in an estimated 800 million people being food insecure, with a further 1.2 billion not receive a sufficient level of nutritious food on a daily basis. The Food and... Read More
Posted on May 10, 2016
Response from Dr. Stuart Smyth, Assistant Professor, Department of Bioresource Policy, Business and Economics, University of Saskatchewan • May 19, 2016
This is always a challenging question to answer. The price difference between GMO and non-GMO varies from product to product and from one location to the next. The answer depends on what type of non-GMO product is being purchased. Most GMOs consumed are in the form of processed foods, it’s estimated that as much as 80 percent of processed foods include a GM ingredient. Let’s think of food prices like car prices. An automotive company offers a plain-Jane car at the lowest price, if... Read More
Posted on March 28, 2016
Response from Dr. Stuart Smyth, Assistant Professor, Department of Bioresource Policy, Business and Economics, University of Saskatchewan • April 19, 2016
I believe GM crops to be the most sustainable form of food production. One of the biggest challenges for farmers is the control of weeds. Weeds reduce the yield of the crop in the fields. GM crops provide such strong weed control that farmers have been able to remove tillage as a form of weed control in many instances. Prior to GM crops, most farmers would produce a crop in the same field for two or three years, then the weeds would be so abundant that the farmer would till the field regularly... Read More
Posted on January 19, 2016
Response from Dr. Stuart Smyth, Assistant Professor, Department of Bioresource Policy, Business and Economics, University of Saskatchewan • February 5, 2016
Traditional canola yields in the 1980s and 1990s prior to the commercialization of GM canola were 22-25 bushels per acre.   All of the canola grown in Canada is now herbicide tolerant. Most of the varieties that are herbicide tolerant have been created through genetic modification, but a small percentage of the market is from varieties developed by mutagenesis. The mutagenic varieties account for 6-8% of the market. There is no longer any non-herbicide tolerant canola in Canada.... Read More
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