Crop biotechnology offers significant economic and environmental gains to Ukraine’s agriculture

14th June 2012: A new assessment of the potential impacts of using existing commercialised crop biotechnology in Ukraine shows that considerable economic and environmental benefits would occur if farmers were allowed access to the technology.

‘Crop biotechnology would provide important economic and production gains, improved incomes and reduced risk for farmers in Ukraine if they were allowed to use the technology” said Graham Brookes, director of PG Economics, co-author of the report. “The environment would also improve from farmers using more benign herbicides or replacing insecticide use with insect resistant maize”

Previewing the study, the key findings are:

  • The total annual potential farm level benefit to Ukraine from using relevant, current GM technology is up to $525 million;
  • Yield gains are likely to arise with the adoption of GM technology, resulting in higher production levels of each crop. This is potentially in the range of a +0.9 million tonnes to +3.2 million tonnes increase in production, equal to +1.5% to +9.5% of the total annual production of the four crops;
  • More intensive producers are likely to gain mainly from reduced costs of production, although yield improvements are also likely to occur. For the majority, more extensive producers, the main benefit from using GM technology is likely to be higher yields;
  • Total herbicide use across the four crops would probably fall by between 4.4% and 7.8% (about 0.24 million to 0.42 million kg). As a result, this will decrease the environmental impact associated with herbicide use on the area planted to GM herbicide tolerant crops by between 15% and 24% ;
  • Insecticides currently annually used on about 100,000 ha of maize, would no longer be needed, contributing a further reduction in pesticide applications of about 23,000 kg of active ingredient;
  • The reduction in herbicide and insecticide use would annually yield fuel savings of between 0.78 million litres and 1.56 million litres. This would result in lower levels of carbon dioxide emissions of between 2.73 million kg and 5.35 million kg.

Download full report in English - PDF 0.6 Kb

Download full report in Ukraine - PDF 1.3 Kb

For additional information, contact Graham Brookes Tel +44(0) 1531 650123. www.pgeconomics.co.uk