GMO landscape in India

Currently India has only one approved crop i.e. BT Cotton. Even though it has been controversial with its produce being nearly doubled in less than a decade, making India as the second largest cotton producer in the world. BT stands for
Bacillus thuringiensis, a bacteria that produces a kind of protein that kills the common crop pest bollworm. More than 24 insecticide sprays, the crops need barely 2 applications, which is miraculous.

But despite its huge success of accounting to 90% GM Cotton seeds in India, in 2015 it saw massive losses in Punjab and Haryana due to whitefly pests.
However, BT cotton’s success has drawn attention from authorities to pave way for other crops too. There have been successful field trials of rice, corn, chickpea, pigeon-pea, sugarcane, sorghum, and potato.

BT Brinjal seems to maintain status quo after its controversy and bans. The opponents claim that for commercialization of these crops, some important facts about the toxicity of NT Brinjal were not shared. It can make you sick and a regular consumption can adversely impact the immune system, or lead to liver and reproductive disorders.

The GM Mustard is apparently to get a green signal as GM Food Crop.


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