Brazil bets on transgenic wheat and gives the green light to cultivation and importation


Brazil is one of the largest food producers in the world, and following in the footsteps of its neighboring country, Argentina has decided to approve the cultivation, importation and marketing of in the country of genetically modified wheat (HB4)in a context of adverse weather conditions in the region, industry sources reported this Friday.

The National Technical Commission for Biosafety (CTNBio), a body linked to the Ministry of Science and Technology of Brazil, released the transgenic wheat at the request of the company “Tropical Melhoramento e Genetica”in association with the Argentine firm Bioceres.

Brazil thus becomes the second country in which the competent agencies approve the cultivation of HB4 wheat, after Argentina. Both nations represent 90% of the cultivated area of ​​wheat in South America, according to Bioceres.

Approved for food and feed

The CTNBio decision is adopted after Brazil gave the green light to the use of flour made with transgenic wheat in November 2021which in its day was questioned by consumer protection organizations and part of the wheat sector.

“In addition to opening the Brazilian market to technology, the decision opens the way for commercialization in Argentina through channels other than Bioceres’ identity-preserved HB4,” the company celebrated in a note released this Friday.

Bioceres indicated that the release in Brazilian territory will also allow it to “accelerate” its collaboration with the Brazilian Agricultural Research Company (Embrapa) to develop “New varieties of subtropical wheat”. According to the company, genetically modified wheat (HB4) makes it possible to adapt crops “to a more extreme climate”, offering “a yield increase of more than 40% in severely water-stressed environments.”

“HB4 wheat has already been approved for use in food and feed in the United States, Colombia, New Zealand, Australia, South Africa and Nigeria, and for use in feed in Indonesia,” says Bioceres. The Brazilian Association of the Wheat Industry (Abitrigo) stated in a note that it was “favorable to whats innovative developments that can bring benefits to the health and food security of Brazilians”.

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