Where are GMO crops being grown?
The biotech industry would have you believe that the global market for GM crops is huge, and that Ireland’s refusal of GM crops would result in massive economic losses. Both of these assertions are false. More than 80% of the area cultivated with biotech crops is still concentrated in only three countries: the US, Argentina and Canada. The estimated global market value of transgenic crops in 2003 was only €4.5 – 4.75 billion, including sales of transgenic seed plus technology fees (i.e. royalties) paid by farmers. This amounts to a mere 19% of the €25 billion market for organic food, which has been growing at 10% per annum for the past 12 years. 90% of GM crops were grown in just three countries (the USA, Canada, and Argentina.) During 2005, 21 countries grew GM crops commercially on 90 million hectares, an 11% increase on 2004 (see Table 1). The majority of this arises from increased acreage in Brazil. Although the European Commission (EC) has given approval for nine GMO crops to be g