NON-GMO Russia Grows Bumper Crops in 2017
Russia, known for its strong stance against geneticallymodified crops, has in 2017 produced its best wheat crop yield since 1978.
Russia’s wheat production this year delivered a recordhigh 81 million tons, according to September 12 figures provided by the U.S. Department of Agriculture in its latest published World Agricultural Supply and Demand Estimates. That is up by 3.5 million tons from the previous number.
Prozerno, a Moscow-based grain consultant, projects total corn production in the country to close at 16.3 million tons, yet another record.
Other crops, such as peas and corn, are also expected to reach close to record levels within Russia.
These numbers are high enough that the bigger problem Russia is currently facing regarding those crops is where to store them all.
As an explanation for what has been happening this year in Russia, the USDA summary cites “excellent growing conditions” for why this year was such a banner one. From the Russian side, Vladimir Petrichenko, general director of Prozerno, said that “more funds are invested in the industry, which allows using quality seeds, plant protection products and efficient machinery.”
Not bad for a country when President Dmitry Medvedev of Russia announced in 2014 (only three years ago) that Russia would no longer import GMO products. As Medvedev said at the time, “If the Americans like to eat GMO products, let them eat them. We don’t need to do that; we have enough space and opportunities to produce organic food.”
The country’s leading scientists backed up Medvedev strongly. As Irina Ermakova, vice-president of Russia’s National Association for Genetic Safety, said concurrently with Medvedev’s announcement, “It is necessary to ban GMOS, to impose [a] moratorium [on them] for 10 years. While GMOS will be prohibited, we can plan experiments [and] tests, or maybe even new methods of research could be developed. It has been proven that not only in Russia, but also in many other countries in the world, GMOS are dangerous. Methods of obtaining the GMOS are not perfect; therefore, at this stage, all GMOS are dangerous. Consumption and use of GMOS obtained in such a way can lead to tumors, cancers and obesity among animals. Biotechnologies certainly should be developed, but GMOS should be stopped. We should stop from spreading.”
No matter where one stands on the issue of GMOS and their harmful pesticide and herbicide partners made from poisonous glyphosate, something is obviously working quite well this year in very-much-non-gmo-crop Russia.