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Date:

October 23, 2000

Subject:

GM Crops Hurting Pesticide Sales; Science & Misconceptions;

 

Biotech-Based Crops Poised to Erode Insecticide Sales; Growers Predicted
to Substitute Technology Fees for Insecticide Purchases.

PR Newswire Tuesday October 24, 12:21 pm Eastern Time Press Release
SOURCE: Kline & Company, Inc.

LITTLE FALLS, N.J., Oct. 24 /PRNewswire/ -- By the year 2009,
biotechnology-based row crops will be responsible for a
13-million-lb-a-year reduction in insecticides and a 45-million-lb
reduction in herbicide use, according to projections by Kline & Company,
Inc., a Little Falls, NJ-based consulting firm. In its recently published
report, BIOTECH 2009 BUSINESS ANALYSIS, Kline projects that in the
insect-resistance arena, the move toward insect-resistant corn and cotton
will enable the substitution of an estimated $200 million in grower
insecticide purchases with technology fees paid to the developers of the
enabling technology, primarily Pharmacia's Monsanto business unit and,
secondarily, Dow AgroSciences. Acceptance of biotechnology is already
looming as a major issue facing the food industry, and it will determine
whether growers of these crops will be able to realize the benefits of
this technology. Although Kline continues to monitor this issue, its
projections are based on the hypothesis that the controversy will abate
when: (1) traits are made available that are more clearly beneficial to
consumers; and (2) industry communication programs outlining the benefits
take effect. ``We found in our research that the industry expects the
newer output traits to be utilized in a genetic background that includes
insect-resistance and herbicide-tolerance traits,'' said Mancer Cyr, a
senior associate at Kline. The biggest percentage hit is expected to be
taken by the corn insecticide category, historically a $250 million to
$300 million sector. After resistance to corn rootworm is incorporated
into seeds that already resist European cornborers, Kline estimates that
the market will drop by 70%. Cotton will be less affected by the trend
because of a broader mix of insect pests. The herbicide sectors all show
modest declines in expenditures due to a shift in market share toward
lower priced, broad-spectrum glyphosate, which is primarily produced by
Monsanto.

BIOTECH 2009 BUSINESS ANALYSIS forecasts the use of 122 herbicide and
insecticide active ingredients on three major row crops across 28
genetically enhanced seed types through the year 2009. An innovation in
this year's edition of the report is a simulator program that enhances the
value of the report, enabling clients to do their own crop/chemical
scenario building.

For details on how to subscribe to BIOTECH 2009 BUSINESS ANALYSIS, or for
more information on the study or Kline's other capabilities, please visit
our Web site at http://www.klinegroup.com. Or contact Linda Dansbury,
project manager, Kline & Company, Inc., Overlook at Great Notch, 150 Clove
Road, Little Falls, NJ, 07424 via phone at (973) 435-3442 or via e-mail at
linda_dansbury@klinegroup.com or Lynn Gillette, sales and marketing
manager, Kline Research, via phone at (973) 435-3448, or via e-mail at
lynn_gillette@klinegroup.com. SOURCE: Kline & Company, Inc.
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From: "Kershen, Drew L"
Subject: Bt-spray dangers

Tom and AgBioView readers:
A while back, Roger Morton posted on this listserv a copy of a report that
addressed, with citations to studies, the toxicological and enviornmental
dangers of bt-sprays. What was most interesting about the report was that
it was prepared by a group that, in my mind at least, is affiliated with
organic agriculture.

In a separate, off listserv message, I am sending the Roger Morton post to
Tom DeGregori. I do this because I know that attachments can cause
problems for some readers' e-mail programs.

Drew

Drew L. Kershen, Earl Sneed Centennial Professor of Law, University of
Oklahoma College of Law
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From: Alex Avery
Subject: Re: AGBIOVIEW: History Channel on Biotech

Concerning the post below noting the episode of Modern Marvels on
agriculture and biotechnology, I missed the notice so I missed the
show--anyone who saw it have any reviews?

Also, about 2-3 years ago I tried to contact the producer of Modern
Marvels to suggest that they do a show on agricultural technology. (I love
the show!) I was told the best way to contact them was via their website,
so I went to the Modern Marvels website and left a rather long and
detailed "suggestion" on their Feedback page.

Maybe that "suggestion" lit a spark, or perhaps they were already planning
to do a show on agriculture--who knows? Wish I'd seen it--the show usually
does an admirable job of looking at all sides of a technology, as well as
that technologies impacts on society.

Alex Avery
Hudson Institute

>From: "R. Alan Smith" Subject: History Channel:
Farming Technology - From Family Farms to This week on The History
Channel's MODERN MARVELS: a world premiere for FARMING TECHNOLOGY,
featuring the Biotechnology Industry Organization's Val Giddings and USDA
Secretary Dan Glickman. A look at the evolution of
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Subj: Hint of sanity returns to Britain, while U.S. situation worsens
From: Andura Smetacek

According to the Independent (UK) on Sunday, British Prime Minister Tony
Blain intends to attack the "dogma of the Greens. This is good news.
Unfortunately, at the same time Genetic Food Alert (the latest Fenton
Communications scare campaign coalition against biotech) is circulating
campaign materials in the U.S. prompting biotech opponents to engage in
on-line viral marketing campaigns and Halloween supermarket rallies
repleat with false promises of cash and other prizes to people who help
spread the word attacking GMOs.

As the credibility of anti-biotech campaigners in Europe begins to crack
under the spotlight of time, the media in the U.S. continue to ignore the
extremist mentality, no claim or activity too misleading for us and
blatant financial conflicts of interests behind these campaigns.

According to the news cuttings, Blair will this week "rebuke green groups
for putting dogma and prejudice before science, and indicate that the (UK)
Government is determined to press on with trials of GM crops." The
articles further note that "Blair complains in private that green groups
are never satisfied, constantly criticising..." Blair, the reports say, is
targeting his messages to Greenpeace and other protesters who have
destroyed GM crops noting, "Science and values will dictate how we
proceed, not dogma and prejudice..."

Yet, in the United States the latest web site www.StopFrankenFood.org (a
product of the Institute for Agriculture Trade Policy) is being promoted
by the GE Food Alert coalition to recruit more support for their fear
campaign. In materials distributed by GE Food Alert to campaign organizers
last week they suggest engaging in "viral marketing" campaigns with a
Trick or Treat message linked to the Halloween holidays. To encourage wide
distribution of these e-mail missives they specifically cite examples of
falsely offering money or free things if people forward their messages.

In the GE Food Alert "Viral Marketing Tip Sheet" they note: "People love
free things, and will do about anything ot get something for free... For
instance, we've all probably seen the email that promises a $5 gift
certificate from the Gap if we just pass the word along to 10 or our
friends. It's utterly false, and most of the people who forward it admit
that they don't think it will really work, but they all do it anyway..."

These groups are now targeting parents and children on-line with these
misleading messages and false promotions. The "Student Environmental
Action Coalition" SEAC (a Ralph Nader sponsored organization) and the BAN
Genetically Engineered Foods (BAN-GEF) listserv's are offering "Free Ben &
Jerry's" ice cream to those who help forward the GE Food Alert Halloween
message.

Yet, the media still spends its time reporting their misleading claims
about Monarch Butteflies and other false-fronts...

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Complaints upheld against organic claims
THE JOURNAL (Newcastle, UK)
October 20, 2000, Friday Edition 1 FARMING JOURNAL, Pg. 50

THE Advertising Standards Authority has confirmed its July verdict on the
Soil Association's promotional leaflet Five Reasons to Eat Organic. Four
out of five complaints, made by National Office of Animal Health [NOAH],
have been upheld.

Evidence submitted by the Soil Association to support its appeal was
deemed by the ASA Council to contain "nothing to warrant a change in the
adjudication". It rejected Soil Association claims about organic farming,
saying they had not provided evidence to back them up. The claims stated
"You can taste the difference", "It's healthy", "It's better for the
environment" and "Organic means healthy happy animals".

The ASA has asked the association to remove the claims and not to use them
again unless they can be substantiated. Commenting on the decision, NOAH
said: "Making this complaint was not intended as an attack on organic
farming itself. We have no objection to any farmer choosing to farm in a
particular way, laws and standards permitting.

"But we are most concerned that some proponents of organic farming tend to
promote themselves by attacking the 97pc of British farmers who farm
conventionally."

NOAH's director Roger Cook said: "It is often forgotten that conventional
farming methods were developed as a way to solve the problems of earlier
farming generations who farmed in ways that would now be termed organic.
"The claims the ASA rejected have been at the core of the promotion of
organic farming for many years. They have undoubtedly played a major part
in the growing commercial success of organic produce.

"The conclusion must be that public health and welfare is paramount
whether the produce is organically or conventionally produced," he added.

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(From Agnet Douglas A Powell )

CASE STUDY IN BENEFITS AND RISKS OF AGRICULTURAL BIOTECHNOLOGY: ROUNDUP
READY SOYBEANS October 16, 2000 Janet E. Carpenter, Leonard P. Gianessi,
National Center for Food and Agricultural Policy 1616 P Street NW, First
Floor, Washington, DC 20036
ftp://debate:friends@sgiserv.unibe.ch/home/debate/soy85.pdf

Abstract
Roundup Ready soybeans have been rapidly adopted by U.S. farmers, yet
their approval for commercialization is under scrutiny. This case study
provides a description of the regulatory process governing agricultural
biotechnology and traces the approval of Roundup Ready soybeans,
summarizing the information that was submitted to U.S. regulatory agencies
by Monsanto. Estimates of the impact that the adoption of Roundup Ready
soybeans has had on U.S. agriculture are also provided. Potential risks
include allergenicity, toxicity, pesticide resistance, out-crossing,
non-target impacts and antibiotic resistance. Benefits include reduction
in production costs, reductions in pesticide applications and shifts to
more benign pesticides. The regulatory structure for agricultural
biotechnology has evolved over the past 25 years, as technology allowing
for genetic modification of plants developed. The system continues to
evolve as new and different applications of the technology emerge, and
understanding of potential risks improves. Indeed, the most recent report
of the National Research Council recommended that any new rules for
regulating genetically modified plants be flexible to reflect improvements
in scientific understanding (NRC 2000). In reviewing the studies that were
conducted on the safety of Roundup Ready soybeans, no indication of
greater health or environmental risks were found compared to conventional
varieties. The benefits of the introduction of Roundup Ready soybeans
include cost savings of $216 million annual in weed control costs and 19
million fewer soybean herbicide applications per year.
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Transgenic Plants and Biosafety: Science, Misconceptions and Public
Perceptions Stewart, C.N. Jr. , Richards, H.A. IV, & Halfhill, M.D.
BioTechniques 29:832-843 http://www.biotechniques.com/

Abstract

Transgenic Plants and Biosafety: Science, Misconceptions and Public
Perceptions One usually thinks of plant biology as a non-controversial
topic, but the concerns raised over the biosafety of genetically modified
(GM) plants have reached disproportionate levels relative to the actual
risks. While the technology of changing the genome of plants has been
gradually refined and increasingly implemented, the commercialization of
GM crops has exploded. Today's commercialized transgenic plants have been
produced using Agrobacterium tumefaciens-mediated transformation or gene
gun-mediated transformation. Recently, incremental improvements of
biotechnologies, such as the use of green fluorescent protein (GFP) as a
selectable marker, have been developed. Non-transformation genetic
modification technologies such as chimeraplasty will be increasingly used
to more precisely modify germplasm. In spite of the increasing knowledge
about genetic modification of plants, concerns over ecological and food
biosafety have escalated beyond scientific rationality. While several
risks associated with GM crops and foods have been identified, the popular
press, spurred by colorful protest groups, has left the general public
with a sense of imminent danger. Reviewed here are the risks that are
currently under research. Ecological biosafety research has identified
potential risks associated with certain crop/transgene combinations, such
as intra- and interspecific transgene flow, persistence and the
consequences of transgenes in unintended hosts. Resistance management
strategies for insect resistance transgenes and non-target effects of
these genes have also been studied. Food biosafety research has focused on
transgenic product toxicity and allergenicity. However, an estimated 3.5 X
1012 transgenic plants have been grown in the U.S. in the past 12 years,
with over two trillion being grown in 1999 and 2000 alone. These large
numbers and the absence of any negative reports of compromised biosafety
indicate that genetic modification by biotechnology poses no immediate or
significant risks and that resulting food products from GM crops are as
safe as foods from conventional varieties. We are increasingly convinced
that scientists have a duty to conduct objective research and to
effectively communicate the results-especially those pertaining to the
relative risks and potential benefits-to scientists first and then to the
public. All stakeholders in the technology need more effective dialogues
to better understand risks and benefits of adopting or not adopting
agricultural biotechnologies

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A Finnish government study reveals that increases in availability of
organic foods do not reduce prices. Anti-biotech activists claim that
organic food prices will drop as they gain consumer acceptance and
increase in availability. However, Finland has among the highest
government subsidies for organic foods with some of the highest market
penetration and availability, and this study shows that prices remain high
and unchanged.

M2 PRESSWIRE October 24, 2000 FINNISH CONSUMER AGENCY Prices of organic
products surveyed - New products on the market, price spreads still large

Plenty of organic products are now available in Finnish grocery shops,
especially supermarkets and hypermarkets. The supply of organic dairy
products, flours and breads has expanded. Organic meat is difficult to
find. The range of organic products is widest in southern, western and
eastern Finland, with fewer products available in the north. Prices have
not changed to any large extent since last year. The difference in price
between regular and organic products has not shrunk.

In late September the Finnish Consumer Agency and the provincial state
offices surveyed the prices of 78 organic products at 111 shops, mainly
grocery shops, in 17 localities. Similar surveys were conducted in 1996,
1997 and 1999.

Organic vegetables Organic tomatoes, potatoes, carrots and onions are
easiest to find in shops. Price spreads are still large. Organic tomatoes
varied most, costing from FIM 10.90 to FIM 39.80 per kilo. Last year the
price ranged from FIM 8.00 to FIM 27.80. Organic carrots cost from FIM
7.80 to FIM 20.00 per kilo. On average organic vegetables cost about twice
as much as regular vegetables. Tomatoes and cabbage cost more than in
1999, while carrots and potatoes cost less.

Dairy products Organic dairy products are easy to find throughout the
country. Organic milk was available at nearly every shop in the survey.
The price varied from FIM 4.40 to FIM 6.90 per litre. Organic cheese is a
new product which is available to a certain extent. Organic Edam cheese
could be purchased in about 42% of shops. The price ranged from FIM 42.90
to FIM 54.90 per kilo.

Organic eggs were available in 75% of shops. The price varied from FIM
16.95 to FIM 42.82 per kilo, while regular eggs cost from FIM 9.56 to FIM
23.28 per kilo. The prices of organic dairy products remained at the
previous year's level. Organic meat still difficult to find Organic meat
was easiest to find in southern and western Finland. It was not available
in the north. Organic minced meat was on sale in about 28% of shops and
cost from FIM 29.90 to FIM 59.90 per kilo.

In 1999 the range was FIM 35.00 to FIM 59.00 or about the same. Prices of
other types of meat rose 4-13%. On average organic minced meat cost FIM
43.68 per kilo and regular minced meat FIM 29.70 per kilo. Expanded range
of organic flours and breads Among the products in the survey, organic
flours were most widely available in shops, and the range included plenty
of new flours. No major change in prices was observed compared with 1999.
The survey indicated that organic flour costs about 50% more than regular
flour.

Different types of organic bread were easy to find in shops. Organic rye
loaf cost from FIM 11.90 to FIM 45.15 per kilo and organic rye bread from
FIM 15.33 to FIM 37.25 per kilo. The average price of Oululainen organic
rye bread was 13% lower than in 1999 while the price of Pirkka organic
sliced rye bread was 11% higher. Different types of rye crisps have also
come on the market. Vaasan Luomukunto rye crisps were available in 80
shops, for example. The price varied from FIM 39.50 to FIM 55.00 per kilo.
Regular Vaasan rye crisps cost from FIM 34.50 to FIM 44.50 per kilo.

Organic baby food easiest to find in large markets Bona and Elo-Evas
organic baby foods were available in shops. Prices were roughly the same
as in 1999. Bona organic vegetables and organic beef for 5-month-olds cost
10% more but Bona organic carrots for 4-month-olds cost 13% less than the
previous year.

Coffee and tea Organic coffee has established its place in grocery shops.
The price has fallen 4-7%. Cafe Beneficio Arabica in a 250-gram bag cost
from FIM 75.60 to FIM 115.60 per kilo. In 1999 the price ranged from FIM
95.20 to FIM 156.00 per kilo. Pirkka organic coffee in the same size bag
cost FIM 59.60 per kilo. Different types of organic teas were available in
20-bag packages, with the price ranging from FIM 9.50 to FIM 18.90. Euro
prices well marked Attention was also paid to price marking in the survey.
Thirteen shops received cautions concerning unit prices. Euro prices were
well marked in 86% of shops and were not indicated in 13% of shops.

Organic products were prominently displayed in about half the shops in the
survey.
What is organic? Organic products can be recognized with the help of the
organic farming label. Organic products are made from organically grown
ingredients according to EU regulations. At least 95% of ingredients must
be organically produced. Every grower and producer of organic products
comes under the organic production control system. The Plant Production
Inspection Centre is in charge of controlling organic farming.

The price comparison can be ordered from the Consumer Agency's information
point, tel: +358 9 7726 7571. The comparison can also be viewed on the
Internet in Finnish at
http://www.kuluttajavirasto.fi/tietoa/hintavertailut/index.html CONTACT:
Inspector Seija Koljonen Tel: +358 9 7726 7527