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Global Food Trade and the Costs of Non‐Adoption of Genetic Engineering

Kjersti Nes, K Aleks Schaefer () and Daniel P. Scheitrum

American Journal of Agricultural Economics, 2022, vol. 104, issue 1, 70-91

Abstract: For several staple grains, the share of trade that originates in and is destined for countries that have approved genetically engineered (GE) varieties continues to expand as a share of total trade. As the GE‐world expands, non‐adoption of GE technology may isolate a market, effectively eliminating a growing source of food. This research seeks to quantify the impacts of GE approval and non‐approval on food prices and access to food from abroad in importing countries. We show that non‐adoption of GE technology reduces a country's access to imports and raises its prices. Not only do non‐approving importers fail to receive the full benefits of agricultural expansion resulting from genetic engineering, the countries are worse off relative to a world in which the technology never existed.

Date: 2022
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