Home » Farming with Dryland Cotton » Biotechnology has transformed the cotton industry

Biotechnology has transformed the cotton industry

Since GM cotton was introduced in 1996, its use by Australian growers has meant 31.9 million fewer spray runs, saving 26.8 million litres of fuel and reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 71.5 million kgs of CO2*.

There’s also been a reduction in the use of insecticides and herbicides by a massive 22 million kgs of active ingredient. Best of all, GM cotton and canola farmers have earned an extra $1.37 billion in income*.

benefits-of-GM-crops

Simplified insect and weed control

Bollgard® 3 technology contributes to the sustainable management of Helicoverpa spp., one of the cotton industry’s most significant insect pests.

Roundup Ready Flex® cotton is able to tolerate applications of Roundup Ready Herbicide® with PLANTSHIELD® by Monsanto in its vegetative and reproductive stages, allowing growers to apply Roundup Ready Herbicide with PLANTSHIELD by Monsanto in crop to weeds when and where they appear.

Cost effective

Bollgard 3, Bollgard II and Roundup Ready Flex technologies reduce variability in planning and budgeting.

Due to reduced reliance on shielded spray equipment, cultivation and chipping compared with conventional cotton systems, growers can expect significant savings in time and money from reduced insecticide applications, labour costs, equipment costs and storage costs.

Environmentally sustainable approach to growing cotton

Biotechnology has reduced the environmental impact of cotton production, enabling an overall decrease in the amount of pesticides used.

Roundup tolerant products have also helped growers reduce reliance on more persistent herbicides, which may contaminate our precious waterways or harm wildlife.

Increased biodiversity

Bollgard 3 and Bollgard II has lead to a more sustainable Integrated Pest Management (IPM) approach and provided a foundation for the rapid adoption of IPM practices. With Bollgard 3 and Bollgard II, cotton growers can successfully implement IPM, improving crop biodiversity. Bollgard 3 and Bollgard II enhances on-farm biodiversity, allowing greater use of beneficial insects.