Iowa Farmer's Perception of Transgenic Corn for Control of European Corn Borer and Corn Rootworm
In 1996, farmers had the option of purchasing com seed genetically engineered to produce a protein derived from Bacillus thuringiensis (B.t.), a soil bacterium that causes high mortality in European corn borer larvae. By inserting the B.t. protein gene into plants (making them transgenic), biotechnology has demonstrated many opportunities for future innovative techniques to manage crop pests. Transgenic crops may greatly improve farmers' capacities to manage serious insect pests, but if farmers hold negative perceptions of this technology and/or discount pests like European com borer as being an economic problem, adoption of this pest management technique may not be widely accepted.