Brazil state ends GM seed distribution
The Brazilian state government of Rio Grande do Sul has ended its distribution of genetically modified maize under its “Troca-troca [swap-swap]” programme, national media report. The smallholder state aid fund, the Feaper, has withdrawn such products from its maize seed deliveries. The national seed association, the Abrasem, says it is disappointed by the move, which “denies, especially to smallholders, choice and access to high-technology seed”. Almost 40% of maize cultivated in the state is of GM lines, it says. The Feaper’s Troca-troca programme distributes maize seed to smallholders in the state, seeking to “make the acquisition of seed more viable” through lines of credit. The state government reportedly denies that it is “anti-GM”, but that it decided to suspend distribution as “the programme serves farmers with insufficient technology to plant GM lines”.