Field trial of BT cotton seeds delivers poor result

Md Owasim Uddin Bhuyan

Contained field trial of Bt cotton seeds on the yards of Bangladesh Agricultural Research Institute at Gazipur delivered poor results.
Cotton Development Board said that BT cotton seeds imported from China failed to kill bollworms which attack on fruiting body of cotton plants.
CDB technologists found that bollworms were resistant to BT cotton seeds imported from China.
They said that it happened due to low toxicity in the imported BT cotton seeds.
The Chinese Bt seeds were not active against bollworms, the main enemy of the cotton crop CDB executive director Md Farid Uddin told New Age Tuesday.
That’s why, he said, the authorities took the decision to import Bt cotton seeds from India.
The government imported BT cotton seeds from China in April last year for contained field trial at BARI’s yards at Gazipur.
He said that the CDB imported the Bt cotton seeds for contained field trial after full compliance of the bio-safety rules.
After scientific evaluation of the results of confined field trials BT cotton seeds would be given to farmers for commercial cultivation, he said.
Bangladesh annually produces 1.50 lakh bales of cotton against the demand of 55 lakh bales, according to CDB.
The agriculture ministry introduced GM crops in Bangladesh in January 2014, through cultivation of Bt brinjal. The agriculture ministry would introduce genetically modified potato and rice seeds, said officials.
Green activists at home and abroad are opposing introduction of GM crops saying that being contrary to e natural farming they would harm human health and the environment.

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