Genetically Modified Crops in India: The Bt Brinjal Controversy


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Case Details:

Case Code : BENV017
Case Length : 15 Pages
Period : 2006-2008
Pub Date : 2008
Teaching Note :Not Available
Organization : Monsanto Holdings P Ltd
Industry : Agricultural biotechnology
Countries : India

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Please note:

This case study was compiled from published sources, and is intended to be used as a basis for class discussion. It is not intended to illustrate either effective or ineffective handling of a management situation. Nor is it a primary information source.

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Excerpts

The Cartagena Protocol on Biosafety

The Cartagena Protocol (CP) was negotiated under the Convention of Biodiversity (CBD). The CBD was adopted in 1992 at the United Nations Conference for Environment and Development. The main objectives of the CBD are conservation of biological diversity, sustainable use of resources, and equitable sharing of the benefits arising out of the use of genetic resources...

The Cartagena Protocol in India

In India, a sizeable population is dependent on agriculture, which itself is dependent on the monsoon and the availability of appropriate material inputs, including seeds. The farmers are generally ready to try out any new technology to improve yield and returns as is evident from what happened during the Green Revolution days . However, the adverse impact of the Green Revolution is now coming to light in the form of mono-cropping, loss of local cultivars or land races, imbalances in soil nutrients, and excessive use of fertilizers and pesticides, which have affected soil productivity and the returns from agriculture...

Transgenes in India

A transgenic crop, Bt cotton was for the first time introduced in India in 2002. In 2002, three varieties of Bt cotton hybrids promoted by Mahyco-Monsanto (Mech 12 Bt, Mech 162 Bt, Mech 184 Bt) were approved for commercialization in 6 states of India (Refer to Table I for Bt cotton Development by Mahyco-Monsanto in India - A Timeline)...

Status of Bt Brinjal

Brinjal is an important and indigenous vegetable crop in India. The major brinjal producing states are Uttar Pradesh, Orissa, Bihar, Assam, West Bengal, Maharashtra, Gujarat, Andhra Pradesh, and Karnataka. The production of brinjal in the year 2005-06 was 9,136,300 metric tons (MT) from an area of 553,300 hectares (HA).

Two Sides of the Brinjal Story

Some analysts are of the opinion that since the cultivation and consumption of brinjal in India is extensive, the commercialization of Bt brinjal will have significant economic implications for the farmers...

Exhibits

Exhibit I: Recombinant DNA Molecule Technique
Exhibit II: Salient Features of the Cartagena Protocol
Exhibit III: Article 6, 8 and 25 from the Environmental Protection Act, 1986
Exhibit IV: Protocol for Release of Transgenic Crop
Exhibit V: Transgenic Crops under Development and Field Trials in India

 

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