Last week South Australia announced it would be lifting its ban on the growth of genetically modified organisms (GMO). Starting December 1st, 2019 farmers in this state will have the ability to choose what types of crops they want to grow. The decision is primarily economic, following a report that determined the current ban had cost grain growers $33 million since 2004, and had prevented investment in agricultural research and development. This shift in policy represents that despite mixed public perception, the potential of biotech is undeniable.
For those intimately involved in food production, GMO crops do not represent a radical overhaul of a traditional system. According to a 2018 study by the Economic and Social Research Council, farmers embrace the technology as the next step in agriculture development, not as an entirely new process. That is because in practice the technology is not vastly different than what has been going on for nearly 100 years.