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EU y Canadá empujan a México al mercado de los transgénicos

Fecha: 
Mar, 2014-05-20

Mientras México está por definir una postura al respecto, funcionarios de ambos países promueven los beneficios para impulsar comercialmente a la región de América del Norte.

EU y Canadá empujan a México al mercado de los transgénicos

En el marco del debate sobre el uso de semillas genéticamente modificadas en la agricultura mexicana, representantes de los gobiernos de Estados Unidos y Canadá, países que se ubican entre los principales productores de estos productos, promueven en el país sus beneficios para impulsar comercialmente a la región.

Durante el primer Foro Global de Expectativas Agroalimentarias 2014, los secretarios del ramo de ambos países se reunieron con su homólogo mexicano para promover el uso de la biotecnología en el campo para hacer frente a los retos del cambio climático y coadyuvar en el desafío de alimentar a los más de nueve mil millones de habitantes que poblarán el planeta en los siguientes años.

El secretario del Departamento de Agricultura de Estados Unidos, Thomas Vilsack, enfatizó que es necesario recurrir a la ciencia para mejorar la producción de alimentos sin riesgo, mientras que el ministro de Industria Agroalimentaria de Canadá, Gerry Ritz, dijo que los recursos de la biotecnología en la producción de semillas mejoradas y resistentes es una solución ante la amenaza constante del cambio climático y las plagas, y que el uso de estos productos impulsará comercialmente a la región.

El titular de la Secretaría de Agricultura, Ganadería, Desarrollo Rural, Pesca y Alimentación (Sagarpa), Enrique Martínez y Martínez, respondió que México tiene mucho camino por avanzar en el campo de la biotecnología en el sector agrario, como es el uso de semillas mejoradas, para enfrentar los fenómenos climáticos como las sequías, como ya lo hacen Estados Unidos y Canadá.

De acuerdo con el estudio Impacto Global de los Cultivos Biotecnológicos 2013, de la consultora inglesa PG Economics, los agricultores que utilizaron semillas mejoradas y cultivos biotecnológicos obtuvieron beneficios económicos por 18.8 mil millones en 2012 de dólares y por 116.6 mil millones de dólares entre 1996 y 2012.

En la actualidad, México sólo tiene cultivos transgénicos de algodón y soya que, de acuerdo con el citado reporte, generaron beneficios económicos por 141.6 millones de dólares entre 1996 y 2012.

México ocupa el lugar 16 a nivel mundial en la producción de organismos genéticamente modificados en el agro, con 200 mil hectáreas de siembra de estos productos, muy por debajo de los registros de sus socios comerciales en la región norteamericana.

Estados Unidos es el principal productor de transgénicos en el mundo, con 69.5 millones de hectárea de maíz, soya, algodón, canela, remolacha, azúcar, alfalfa, papaya y calabaza, principalmente; Canadá, por su parte, ocupa el cuarto lugar con 11.6 millones de hectáreas dedicadas a la siembra de maíz, soya, azúcar y canela modificadas genéticamente.

"Utilizar la biotecnología nos brinda la posibilidad de dejar de usar pesticidas y consumir menos agua, además de que son productos que nos dan seguridad e inocuidad. En EU hemos visto aumentos en la productividad sin riesgos", declaró Vilsack.

Por su parte, Gerry Ritz, subrayó que Canadá ha trabajado iniciativas respecto a los organismos genéticamente modificados con el gobierno estadounidense e instituciones internacionales para aprovechar las cualidades de estas semillas, y que esperan avanzar en el tema en la región.

Agregó que además de producir semillas resistentes a la sequía y los efectos del cambio climático, Canadá realiza cambios genéticos en el ganado, debido a que importantes economías como Japón ya demandan estos productos.

El oficial mayor de la Sagarpa, Marco Bucio, dijo a 24 HORAS que será hacia finales de año cuando la dependencia emita una postura sobre el uso de transgénicos en México, una vez que concluyan los foros regionales y nacionales de consulta sobre la reforma al campo.

Finalmente, el director del Instituto Interamericano de Cooperación para la Agricultura (IICA), Víctor Villalobos, dijo a este diario que este organismo está dispuesto a apoyar a México una vez que el gobierno tome una decisión.

 

“México tiene experiencia tomando todas las medidas de bioseguridad para siembra e importación de transgénicos. El tema del maíz es el que está causando controversia, pero hay que llegar a una decisión política en función del conocimiento científico, para determinar si el país va a seguir importando maíz que de todos modos es transgénico o si se van a definir regiones donde el riesgo para sembrar semillas modificadas sea mínimo y manejable”, concluyó.