Transgenic crops

Wed Mar 12 07:58:39 EST 1997

Bt-producing corn was in the fields last year in northern Indiana.  The idea 
is to increase resistance to European corn borer.  According to an article 
published in the Fort Wayne Journal-Gazette (02 Dec 96), there were several 
small plots (all <10 acres, apparently) of transgenic corn in Wabash, 
Huntington and Allen Counties.  Reports from farmers were very positive.  
According to the farmers quoted, it increased yield by 6-12 bushels per acre, 
which would be 5-10%, I would think.  One farmer with high borer infestation 
estimated that he grossed $80 per acre more for the Bt variety.  Bill 
Pilacinski, spokesman for Northrup King, estimated that "...close to 50 
percent of the corn growing in the Corn Belt within the next three to five 
years would contain the Bt gene."  (figures and quote from newspaper article)

David J. Hicks		djhicks at
Biology, Manchester College

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