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. . . [A]ctivists fear ancient varieties of one of the world’s most produced and consumed grains could be wiped out if a ban on genetically modified (GM) maize is lifted in Mexico.
Mexican farmers have been sowing GM cotton since 1996, but culturally sensitive corn is a different story. . . .a legal battle has put GM maize cultivation on hold for the past two and a half years.
In August 2015, a Mexican judge overturned a 2013 ban on sowing GM corn, but his decision was appealed by a coalition of activists. The ban remains in force, pending a ruling on the appeal but the case could still end up in the supreme court.
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Opponents argue that GM crops will be less able to withstand the effects of climate change, whereas a diversity of crops will allow farmers to dip into a biological “reservoir” of varieties that have adapted to local conditions.
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But advocates of GM crops say such a stance is naive. Mexico imports about a third of the maize it consumes every year — and much, if not all of that, is GM, although a lot is used for animal feed. “Most people don’t even realise . . . GM corn is already on Mexican tables,” says Francisco Javier Mayorga, who, as Mexico’s agriculture secretary from 2009 to 2012 oversaw GM trials.
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Read full, original post: Agribusiness eyes Mexico as courts debate lifting GM maize ban