ERIC Number: EJ859690
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Abstractor: As Provided
Case Study: Transgenic Crop Controversy in Costa Rica
Hague, Steve S.
Journal of Natural Resources and Life Sciences Education, v38 p204-208 2009
Costa Rica has rich ecological resources and has been a steady political force in turbulent Central America. Most recently, it has become a battleground between pro- and anti-genetically modified organism (GMO) political forces. This case study examines the roles of U.S.-based cotton ("Gossypium hirsutum" L.) seed companies, anti-GMO activists, and the Costa Rican government officials in this debate. Cotton seed companies in the United States use Costa Rica as an important counter-season seed production location. Most of the seed increases and breeding generations grown in Costa Rica contain transgenic traits. By allowing the use of these traits, Costa Rican exports to food markets in North America and Europe have been threatened and enrage those most passionate against globalization and GMOs. On the other hand, banning GMOs would end the counter-season cotton ("Gossypium hirsutum" L. and "G. barbadense" L.) seed industry in Costa Rica, but more importantly reduce the likelihood that crops such as rice ("Oryza sativa" L.), sugarcane ("Saccharum" spp), and floriculture in Costa Rica would ever contain valuable transgenic traits. The public debate, which has been ongoing for several years, has left most Costa Ricans more confused than ever with no definitive resolution in sight. Students are encouraged to form possible resolutions to the conflict and weigh the arguments and counter-arguments for transgenic plants.
Descriptors: Global Approach, Foreign Countries, Safety, Ecology, Case Studies, Agricultural Production, Genetics, Industry, Food Standards, Biotechnology, Natural Resources, Case Method (Teaching Technique), Science Instruction, Teaching Methods, Controversial Issues (Course Content)
American Society of Agronomy. 677 South Segoe Road, Madison, WI 53711. Tel: 608-273-8080; Fax: 608-273-2021; Web site: http://www.jnrlse.org/
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Descriptive
Education Level: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: Costa Rica