Title: A GM subsistence crop in Africa: the case of Bt white maize in South Africa

Authors: Marnus Gouse, Carl E. Pray, Johann Kirsten, David Schimmelpfennig

Addresses: Department of Agricultural Economics, Extension and Rural Development, University of Pretoria, South Africa, Agricultural Annex, Lynnwood Road, 0002, South Africa. ' Department of Agricultural Economics, Extension and Rural Development, University of Pretoria, South Africa, Agricultural Annex, Lynnwood Road, 0002, South Africa. ' Department of Agricultural Economics, Extension and Rural Development, University of Pretoria, South Africa, Agricultural Annex, Lynnwood Road, 0002, South Africa. ' Department of Agricultural Economics, Extension and Rural Development, University of Pretoria, South Africa, Agricultural Annex, Lynnwood Road, 0002, South Africa

Abstract: The Republic of South Africa (RSA) is the first developing country to plant genetically modified staple food – Bt white maize. The following paper describes the development and spread of Bt maize in RSA that started in 1998. After that, based on surveys of 33 large commercial Bt maize farmers and 368 smallholders in 2001/2, it shows that Bt maize gives higher yields for both groups and reduces pesticide use particularly for the large commercial farmers. The paper concludes with a discussion of policy options which would make the Bt maize more accessible to more small holders.

Keywords: agricultural biotechnology; Republic of South Africa; Bt-maize; subsistence crops; developing countries; genetically modified organisms; GM crops; pesticide reduction.

DOI: 10.1504/IJBT.2005.006447

International Journal of Biotechnology, 2005 Vol.7 No.1/2/3, pp.84 - 94

Available online: 10 Mar 2005 *

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