(Photo. State Secretary Miguel Etchevehere announced the release in the Seed Association headquarters)

Buenos Aires, June 21st. Last week, alongside Mr. Christian Monty, Head of Global Cotton from BASF, the AgroIndustry Secretary Luis Miguel Etechevehere, announced the release of a new GMO trait for cotton, that provides it herbicide and insect resistance.

This is the fifth trait approved for cotton, after Bt (1998), Roundup Ready (2001), RRBt (2009), glyphosate and glufosinate (2009) and glyphosate and HPPD inhibitors (2019).

Mr. Etchevehere remarked that this is the second trait for insect resistance, since 1998 when BollGard was released. “This is a key tool to fight resistant-insects”, the official emphasized. It happens that pink bollworm (Pectinophora gossypiella) has developed resistance to the original Bt protein, that became in a serious threat for the crop.

The new cotton is based on the stack of previous traits. Its commercial name is GlyTol TwinLink Plus and will be commercialized by BASF, the press release explains.

The local CEO of BASF, Gustavo Portis said that “farmers need technology to enhance their production without affecting the scarce natural resources. This is a demand from society and the planet in a whole. Unfortunately, cotton farming had a setback at a global scale due to the lack of competitiveness. We think that new technologies will bring cotton farmers in Chaco and Santiago del Estero provinces the opportunity to come back to plant cotton with high quality”.

The release of the new trait was formally made by the publication of the Order 31/2019 from the Food and Bioeconomy Secretariat, dependent of the State Secretary Miguel Etchevehere.

In its fundaments, the order explains that the goal is to close the technological gap with Brazil, which already approved this trait. Originally, the same order clarifies that the trait will not be immediately commercialized, but this Friday 21st, a correction was published at the Official Register saying that the trait “could commercialize in the short term”.