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Seed availability for non-GM cotton production

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Cover picture - Organic cotton field in Africa

A new report Seed availability for non-GM cotton production – an explorative study has just been published. It is a collaboration between Louis Bolk Institute, Lanting Agriconsult, FiBL, Texas A& AgriLife Research and Textile Exchange. It is an inventory – a first assessment of the problems of accessing organic seed and the contamination of organic cotton seed with GM in the field.

Approximately 81% of respondents overall, including 90% of organic farmers who responded, are of the opinion that organic cotton seed is difficult to access. In countries where GM cotton is predominant (the USA, India, China and Burkina Faso), close to 90% of respondents feel it is difficult to impossible to access organic cotton seed. Accessing organic cotton seed is considered problematic even in countries where GM cotton is not grown. Close to 96% or respondents believe that seed multiplication programmes are important to ensure the availability of organic cotton seed. Next to seed multiplication breeding programmes to better adapt varieties to organic and low-input growing conditions were a priority. It is recommended that workshops be implemented in India, China and West Africa to develop detailed seed strategies for those areas. The full report is available here.


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