Across the Midwestern corn belt, a familiar battle has resumed, hidden in the soil. On one side are tiny, white larvae of the corn rootworm. On the other side are farmers and the insect-killing arsenal of modern agriculture.
We’ve reported on earlier phases of this battle: The rootworms resistant to one type of genetically engineered corn, and an from scientists for the government to limit the use of this new corn to preserve the effectiveness of its protection against rootworm.
It appears that farmers have gotten part of the message: Biotechnology alone will not solve their rootworm problems. But instead of shifting away from those corn hybrids, or from corn altogether, many are doubling down on insect-fighting technology, deploying more chemical pesticides than before. Companies like or that sell soil insecticides for use in corn fields are reporting huge increases in sales: 50 or even 100 percent over the past two years.
Read the full story here: As Biotech Seed Falters, Insecticide Use Surges In Corn Belt