Brazil to lead world in biotech crops: association

France 24

Brazil is on course to overtake the United States as the world’s top producer of biotech crops in the coming years, a leading promoter of farm biotechnology said Tuesday.

The United States currently holds the lead with 69 million hectares (170 million acres) under biocrop cultivation in 2011, ahead of Brazil with 30.3 million, Argentina with 23.7 million and India with 10.6 million, the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications (ISAAA) said.

But USAAA, a government-funded international body promoting the use of farm biotechnology, particularly in developing countries, said that for the third year in a row, Brazil was last year the engine of global biocrop growth, with 4.9 million hectares added, a rise of 20 percent from 2010.

Speaking in a teleconference from the Philippines, ISAAA president Clive James said that while the United States was currently well ahead, “Brazil is closing the gap very quickly” and bringing in new biotech crops like sugar cane.

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