Viewpoint: Pakistan needs GM technology—not just fertilizer—to ensure food security

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A pakistani farmer spreads fertilizer on his crops. Balanced fertilizer is often too expensive for farmers to purchase.

By adopting modern practices like use of genetically modified (GM) seeds, countries such as India, China and Bangladesh have succeeded in increasing their per acre yield.

Apart from technological advancement, they are also giving high subsidies on agriculture inputs to protect the farmers and allied industries, enabling them to compete at the international level.

Unfortunately in Pakistan, the scenario is not very much encouraging and majority of the farmers are using decades-old farming practices. The use of GM seeds is limited to cotton and that too on a small scale

Experts have now started warning the government of a possible food crisis in coming years, if steps are not taken to improve the situation.

The Economic Survey of Pakistan 2016-17 reveals that Pakistan’s land is 100% deficient in nitrogen, 90% deficient in phosphorus and 40% deficient in potassium. It is imperative that the farmers understand the need for balanced use of fertilizers for better crops. However, a hurdle is that fertilizer costs have gone beyond the reach of farmers, despite government subsidies.

The GLP aggregated and excerpted this article to reflect the diversity of news, opinion and analysis. Read full, original post: Balanced fertilizer use key to ensuring food security