Every January and for almost two decades GM crop proponents celebrate the arrival of report of the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech (ISAAA) on commercialized GM crops. The truth is that nothing has changed since they started issuing these reports. They have been making the same claims since 1996: more GM crops, more countries, and more hectares cultivated. Interestingly this is something that ISAAA and the biotech industry see as the ultimate proof of the benefits those crops have for farmers around the world.
This year ISAAA claimed “18 million farmers in 28 countries planted more than 181 million hectares in 2014, up from 175 million in 27 countries in 2013”. When it is said in this manner it would seem that GM crops are infesting the entire planet. However, solid facts indicate that GM crops are still mostly cultivated in a few countries and only a few traits have reached the commercialization stage.