Australia Pests Develop Resistance to Bt Cotton

2 transcripts of broadcasts by the Australian Broadcasting Corporation:
Pests resistant to cotton
ABC News Online. 19th April 2001

The alarm has been raised in the cotton industry that insects are
becoming resistant to genetically modified Ingard cotton.

The NSW Department of Agriculture has been monitoring crops and has
discovered a noticeable increase in the survival of cotton bollworms
this season, indicating the worms are less susceptible to the single BT
gene in Ingard.

Plant Industries Chief, Dr Lindsay Cook says if resistance has developed
to the single gene, the future success of two gene technology - which is
likely to be available within five years - could also be compromised.

Dr Lindsay Cook: "Yes, the two gene cotton is clearly much less prone to
resistance breakdown, since the insect has to mutate to develop
resistance to overcome the two separate genes. Whereas if there was an
increase in resistance to the single gene, the two gene cotton would
only have one remaining gene, so that is a concern. I mean, this is a
warning sign, the industry needs to take another look at their
resistance strategy and make sure that it's still the most effective we
can devise, and then make sure that it implements all the aspects of
that resistance strategy."
Too early for resistance - Monsanto
Australian Broadcasting Corporation - ABC News Online

The marketer of genetically modified cotton, Monsanto, says it's too
early to speculate
on a breakdown in the effectiveness of Ingard.

The company's Brian Arnst says they're yet to be convinced of the
research results.

Brian Arnst: There has been a change in the sampling technique and that
may well
be why there has been some changes in the numbers. However, we are
taking it very
seriously and we need to make sure the pupae destruct process, which
takes place
post-harvest, we are going to be extra diligent this year to ensure the
conduct this as per the regulations.

More info on problems with GM cotton available at:


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