Developing country trends

In the developing countries, the adoption of GM crops has increased steadily—from 14% in 1997, to 16% in 1998, 18% in 1999, 24% in 2000, 26% in 2001, 27% in 2002, and 30% in 2003 (Fig. 13-2). In fact, the growth rates in recent years are faster in developing countries as compared with industrialized countries: 26% versus 17% between 2000 and 2001, 19% versus 9% between 2001 and 2002, and 28% versus 11% between 2002 and 2003 (James, 2001, 2002, 2003). However, the bulk of GM area in developing countries has been mainly in Argentina's industrial agriculture (which grew 22%, 23%, and 21% of world GM area in 2001, 2002, and 2003, respectively) and mainly for the industrial crops soybean, cotton, and corn. If Argentina's statistics were excluded, developing countries would have about 9% global GM area, contributed largely by China and South Africa cultivating mainly Bt cotton. Significantly, more than 85% of the 7 million farmers benefiting from GM crops in 2003 were resource-poor farmers planting Bt cotton in nine Chinese provinces and in South African's province of KwaZulu Natal.

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