Are biotechnology companies the main beneficiaries of GM technologies?
Farmers get a direct profit (12%-21% on average) from growing GM crops via higher yields and lower pesticide applications. A recent study (Brookes and Barfoot, 2011) shows how much GM crops have benefited farmers throughout the world. Since 1996, farmers globally have gained more than ¤44 billion in farm income thanks to GM crops, and 57% of this profit was due to increased yields. In Europe, as in the rest of the world, two thirds of the benefits of growing GM are shared among European farmers and consumers, while one third goes to the developers and seed suppliers. Another recent study by the University of Reading (UK) showed that EU farmers are missing out on ¤440-930 million each year, simply because they do not have access to the GM crops that could be grown here.