Dr Mariechel Navarro, Director, ISAAA Global Knowledge Center on Crop Biotechnology, provides the latest information about her project which seeks to better understand the small-scale, resource-poor Asian farmers that adopt GM/biotech crops.
The programme undertook evaluation of adoption process by farmers in three countries in Asia which together comprise 80% of small farmers in the world.
Contrary to expectation, the study found that younger population is entering farming profession via biotechnology route. They found a lot of young farmers, in the age group 21-40, who are going into biotech crops.
In further encouraging news, from China, the farming system is seeing growing feminisation, helped by biotech crops which eliminate the need for spraying pesticides, making it easier for the women to farm. *
* Interestingly, the problems of strict traditional division of labor by gender in the small holder farming was one of the items flagged up at the recent Multi-disciplinary seminar in food security held at CRASSH.