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To go GMO or no: Study examines question of genetic engineering and risk in varietal selection of potatoes

Image result for gmo potatoIn a scientific study published this month in the American Journal of Agricultural Economics, a research team at Montana State University examines the farm management decision of whether to adopt a new, genetically engineered potato variety, in particular three GMO Innate varieties developed by Simplot and approved for commercial use by the USDA in March 2017. The researchers note that the new varieties have potential human health benefits over other potato varieties, resist browning and bruising, and also resist late blight. If these new potato varieties are adopted, they would represent one of the first GE crops primarily consumed in a low-processed form in the United States. Currently, most GE crops such as alfalfa, corn, soybeans, and sugar beets are either highly processed into final consumer products or fed to livestock. In their paper, the scientists describe the potato industry with a particular reference to seed potatoes and discusses issues surrounding GE potato varieties. The case is built around a leading seed potato operation in Montana, Kimm Brothers Farming. More

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