The global area of GM crops has increased more than 100-fold from 1.7 million hectares in 1996 to over 181.5 million hectares in 2014 – this makes GM crops the fastest adopted crop technology in recent history.
If farmers in WA were to be denied access to this technology, they would effectively be missing out on the next agricultural revolution. Their direct competitors in Canada, the United States, Argentina and Brazil all have total and unfettered access to this technology, and no lack of markets into which to sell GM crops.
World trade in commodities such as soybean, corn, cotton and canola is dominated by countries which have widely adopted GM varieties. This would appear to indicate that GM crop cultivation does not result in widespread trade barriers or price premiums for non-GM products that are not recouped elsewhere on-farm by GM crop growers.
Even in the European Union, which has some of the strictest regulation regulations regarding GM imports and labelling, 65 GM crops are approved for use as food and feed. These include maize, soybean, canola / rapeseed, sugar beet and cotton.
Repealing the <em>GM Crop Free Areas Act</em> means WA farmers can continue competing on a level playing field and access the same markets as their global competitors.