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Philippine farmers support GM aubergines

Leaders of farmer organisations in the Philippines have expressed “strong support” for the multi-location trials of genetically modified insect-resistant Bt aubergines in the country, reports Philippine newspaper, The Philippine Star. Farmers from the country’s 15 regions who gathered at the Second National Agri-biotech Farmers Conference in the Philippines were reportedly unanimously in favour of the trials. The aubergines are resistant to fruit and shoot borers ( Leucinodes orbonalis) and are expected to raise productivity and improve farmers’ livelihoods. Aubergines are reportedly the country’s leading vegetable crop. Trials in the country have been ongoing since 2006, when seeds were imported from India ( Agrow No 496, p 17). Commercial cultivation of GM lines is expected to begin next year ( Agrow No 595, p 21).

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