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Investigation of the factors influencing adoption of GM crops at country level


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  • Hall, Clare
  • Toma, Luiza
  • Moran, Dominic


With the possible exception of nuclear technology, few scientific breakthroughs have generated the level of emotive debate that has surrounded the roll-out of agricultural biotechnology. Initial discussion about the environmental impacts of agricultural genetic modification, are now frequently juxtaposed with counter-claims that the technologies could actually be part of a wider global environmental solution in relation to climate change mitigation and food shortages. This study tests whether there are any consistent messages on why some countries seem to be advancing adoption of the technology, while others are not. We consider the range of claims in existing literature on adoption tendencies and then use structural equation modelling to test and estimate these a priori determinants of GM adoption. We found that being an exporter of maize and soybeans, agricultural area, participation in the Responsible Care Program of the Chemical Manufacturer's Association, having the EU and/or Japan as main trading partners, and participation in international environmental agreements, significantly influence decisions about whether or not to adopt GM crops at the country-level. In addition, there are two variables that are indirectly related to adoption decisions at country-level, namely technological readiness and government effectiveness.

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Bibliographic Info

Paper provided by International Association of Agricultural Economists in its series 2009 Conference, August 16-22, 2009, Beijing, China with number 50366.

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Date of creation: 2009
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Handle: RePEc:ags:iaae09:50366

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Keywords: Genetically modified crops; structural equation model; global adoption.; Agricultural and Food Policy; Crop Production/Industries; Environmental Economics and Policy; Institutional and Behavioral Economics; International Relations/Trade; Land Economics/Use; Research and Development/Tech Change/Emerging Technologies; Research Methods/ Statistical Methods;


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  1. C. Gonsalves & D. R. Lee & D. Gonsalves, 2007. "The Adoption of genetically modified papaya in Hawaii and its implications for developing countries," Journal of Development Studies, Taylor & Francis Journals, vol. 43(1), pages 177-191.
  2. Franks, Jeremy R., 1999. "The status and prospects for genetically modified crops in Europe," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 24(5), pages 565-584, October.
  3. Paarlberg, Robert L., 2002. "The real threat to GM crops in poor countries: consumer and policy resistance to GM foods in rich countries," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 27(3), pages 247-250, June.
  4. Meilke, Karl D. & Pekaric-Falak, Ivana & Huff, Karen, 2001. "The Trade Effects Of Bt Corn," CATRN Papers 12889, Canadian Agri-Food Trade Research Network.
  5. Golob, Thomas F., 2003. "Structural equation modeling for travel behavior research," Transportation Research Part B: Methodological, Elsevier, vol. 37(1), pages 1-25, January.
  6. Artuso, A., 2003. "Risk perceptions, endogenous demand and regulation of agricultural biotechnology," Food Policy, Elsevier, vol. 28(2), pages 131-145, April.
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