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Paraguay to make own GM cotton via Monsanto

Paraguayan authorities are to develop the country’s “own” genetically modified cotton through collaboration with Monsanto. Minister of Agriculture Enzo Cardozo says that a deal will be signed this month between the company and the Paraguayan agricultural technology institute, the IPTA, to introduce genes from one of Monsanto’s GM cotton lines into a Paraguayan variety “to produce a GM cotton in Paraguay”. The Minister adds that the deal aims to make it possible for the country’s cotton growers to use seed “without paying royalties”. National media report that the seed will be available for cultivation within two years. Paraguay approved the sale and marketing of Monsanto’s insect-resistant Bollgard I cotton for the coming season last month ( Agrow No 647, p 20), and granted exceptional use authorisation for other GM cotton lines last month for 2012/13 only ( Agrow No 648, p 21). The plant health and seed quality service, the Senave, is making 37,000 GM and 26,000 conventional cotton seeds available for planting this year.

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