February 15, 2019
Gustavo Grobocopatel on transgenic wheat: “There are risks that have to be assumed“
Despite the resistance within the Government to allow cultivation, the entrepreneur defends the benefits of the seed created by Bioceres, a company that he himself founded.

The president of Grupo Los Grobo, Gustavo Grobocopatel, spoke on Thursday about the transgenic drought-resistant wheat seed that Bioceres developed, a company of which he is a founder, and which has not yet been approved for use on Argentine soil. For the entrepreneur, with this development "Argentina could reach the leadership worldwide". "We would be the first country in the world to have a drought tolerance gene, which allows us to increase wheat productivities, and mitigate the impacts of climate change," he said in a conversation with journalist María Laura Santillán on Radio Nacional.

According to the soybean producer, the one who is not convinced is the Secretary of Agribusiness Luis Etchevehere, for whom this development could affect grain sales abroad. "The only risk is commercial if a country decides not to buy wheat because it is transgenic," said Grobocopatel, adding: "Our position since Bioceres is that there are risks to be assumed and that these risks have to be mitigated through processes and those processes are the ones that are under discussion. " "This wheat yields between 15 and 20% more and does not deteriorate the yield when there is a drought, whoever has this technology will be much more competitive than the others and will be able to displace the rest of the markets," he said.

Also, he argued that it has the approval of the National Service of Health and Agri-Food Quality (Senasa) so it does not represent risks to health or the environment. "When transgenic soybeans and corn were approved, of course there were many risks, but Argentina decided to adopt them and that has brought many benefits for the country.We are in a similar case, obviously this brings commercial risks: the wheat chain has fear and what happened a few days ago is that the president (Mauricio) Macri decided to get involved personally and gave the actors some time to agree on what to do, "he continued. The businessman refers to a meeting that took place on February 5 at Casa Rosada called by Macri, in which Grobocopatel was accompanied by the CEO of Bioceres Federico Trucco, and in which Etchevehere and the INTA head, Juan Balbín, were also present.

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Automatic translation from spanish.

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