Acreage planted with GMO strains will increase in the U.S., according to a recent report. Approximately 86% of corn is now genetically modified with 47% applying stacked gene technology. Soybean varieties will increase to 93% of acres planted, a 2% rise from 2009.
The general acceptance of GMO crops in North America and their extension to Latin America and other regions of the world is contrary to the policy of the European Union.
However, attitudes seem to be softening as GMO crops will be required to meet the demands of a burgeoning world population. Recently, the European Commission has proposed delegating the freedom to decide on cultivation of crops to individual member nations. Unless GMO crops achieve significant acceptance, extension of biotechnology to developing nations will be restrained.
Approval of GMOs has significant implications for world trade. Austrian and Dutch governments support of independent decisions on GMO crops and these nations have been instrumental in initiating the new trend towards separate decisions. Critics of the move suggest that if adopted, European solidarity on other issues may be impaired.