Updated on 6 August 2012
Bt cotton is the only genetically modified crop approved for commercial cultivation in nine states of India
The BioAgri sector has registered a record revenue of $621 million as compared to previous year's revenue of $140 million. However, compared to last two years, the growth rate in 2011-12 was slow as this sector is inching towards saturation stage.
Currently, close to 95 percent of cotton growing farmers have already adopted to the Bt technology leaving less scope of higher growth in the coming years in Bt cotton. There has been an increase in the area under Bt cotton over the last nine years. In 2010 kharif season, the area under Bt cotton was 249 lakh, acres which increased to 276 lakh acres in 2011.
Bt cotton is the only genetically modified crop approved for commercial cultivation in nine states by Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC). At present, 64 companies sell over 780 Bt cotton hybrid seeds in India. Of these, 60 percent are based in Maharashtra and Andra Pradesh. About 35 companies have been involved in production and sales of Bt cotton in India. Forty million packets of Bt cotton were sold during 2011-12 while the estimate for 2012-13 is 36 million packets. The reduction could be due to the fall in cotton prices and increase in the price of Bt cotton seeds. However, the Bt hybrid cotton seeds market will grow after the farmers adopt the new agronomic innovation with high density planting for higher yields.