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GMO will open the agropotential of the East

When delivering agricultural GMO products in the ATR to the Far East, there will be no equal

GMO will open the agropotential of the East
Photo: shuttertock

Arkady Zlochevsky

President of the Russian Grain Union
About a week is left before the start of the Second World Grain Forum in Sochi. One of the main topics of the forum is the export of grain and grain products. Of course, we will talk, in particular, about the export of these products from the Far East to the APR countries. The EastRussia correspondent asked the President of the Russian Grain Union Arkady Zlochevsky about the current situation with the export of agricultural products from the Far East.

Recall that until recently, in early August, as part of the Security Council meeting, the Presidential Plenipotentiary in the Far Eastern Federal District Yury Trutnev said that "In the Far East, it is possible and necessary to develop the production of grain crops, meat, milk, vegetables." Such a statement has a good reason - according to the Ministry of Agriculture, 2015 thousand tons of grain was produced in the Far East in 684,8, while its consumption amounted to 896,3 thousand tons. As a result, the decrease in grain reserves in the region amounted to 21%. Thus, at the present time the Far East is characterized not only by insufficient grain production, but also by depletion of its reserves. At the same time, the problem of grain shortage in the Far East is being solved in addition to using reserves through supplies from the Siberian regions. But this kind of compensation is complicated by the high cost of rail transportation. Despite this, Arkady Zlochevsky is sure that the Far East still needs to consume Siberian grain, and to supply new volumes of its grain, not just grains, but to the countries of Northeast Asia using GMOs.

“If you look at the Far East as an agricultural zone, then it is ideal in terms of climate for the production of crops such as soybeans and corn. Moreover, as for the first, the Far East is generally the homeland of wild soybeans. But it should be understood that the Far East is also ideal for the growth of weeds, which, in turn, prevent the normal growth of the same soybeans within its limits. In addition, the Far East is also favorable for the stem moth - a parasite that is dangerous for some crops, including corn. All these difficulties can be overcome by using genetically modified organisms. Applying this technology in the cultivation of agricultural crops in the Far East, it will be possible to significantly expand agricultural production here, ”noted Arkady Zlochevsky

In this case, he said, the possible new volumes of agricultural production in the Far East should be oriented not to meeting the internal needs of the macroregion (GMOs are prohibited from manufacturing in Russia), but to use it as an opportunity to increase supplies to the APR countries. Because exactly these countries are today the most capacious market for GMO products, and in particular - agricultural. Moreover, this orientation of the Far Eastern agricultural GMO products to the ATR market seems to be the only correct one, because, based on its agroclimatic, soil and geomorphological conditions, the Far East simply can not compete with Siberia, for example, for the same supply of grain to its domestic market - using GMOs, it is grown on its territory or not. It is not even worth trying - the supply of agricultural products from Siberia to the Far East to fully satisfy its needs in it should continue. Yes, and about the supply of agricultural GMO products to the Far East by the Far East, there is no need to worry - here he will not be equal.

“But, of course, in order to start producing the corresponding volumes of agricultural GMO products in the Far East for delivery to the Asia-Pacific region, all the necessary conditions must be created on its territory. This is mainly about the zonal permission for the use of GMOs in agricultural production in the Far East, and, of course, the allocation of zones to which this permission will apply. In addition, it is necessary, as such, to reduce the cost of land in the Far East, since no one will buy it there even for the production of agricultural GMO products for big money, ”said Arkady Zlochevsky.

At the same time, the expert added that, in the event that the production of agricultural GMO products would appear in the Far East, this production, in turn, could later serve as an excellent base for the production of livestock GMO products - for the same purpose - for export to Asia-Pacific countries.

As for the food security problems of the Far East, which may arise from the extensive export of its agricultural GMO products to the Asia-Pacific region, then, in the opinion of Arkady Zlochevsky, in the case of the Far East, in principle, one should not speak of the problem of food security as such, but of independence. That is, that at present the given macroregion depends on external agricultural and agricultural supplies, including cereals, to which the reason is the processes historically formed here. Mainly - the fallout in the Far East during the Soviet period is neither more nor less than a million hectares, due to the absence of economic conditions suitable for the sowing of crops. For the return of this million hectares, in turn, it is necessary that in the Far East all the necessary conditions for the products to be produced on it will be most profitable. That is - for the production of agricultural GMO products on it.
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