Mexico to OK larger GM maize pilot plots
Campaigners expect approvals for more extensive pilot stage planting of genetically modified maize in Mexico over the next couple of months, newswire Reuters reports. It cites agricultural biotechnology association AgroBio Mexico that larger plots will be authorised for planting by the end of October in one state and in November in another. Pilot planting is an intermediate stage between field trials and commercial planting in Mexico. The first pilot approval was granted to Monsanto for its glyphosate-tolerant Roundup Ready maize this year on just 1 ha ( Agrow No 612, p 19). Approval applications for larger plots are pending for Monsanto, DuPont seed subsidiary Pioneer Hi-Bred International and Dow AgroSciences. AgroBio says that the companies aim to start commercial planting by the end of 2012. The Ministry of Agriculture has ten applications for pilot testing under risk analysis, and a further 38 for field trials. Three pilots for Monsanto would cover 29-57.6 ha.