First adopters of biotech crops influence other farmers to plant biotech crops, according to a three-country study on adoption and update pathways of biotech crops in China, India, and the Philippines.
The study was released earlier this month by the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications in Makati City, Philippines.
It was conducted by Center for Chinese Agricultural Policy of Chinese Academy of Sciences, Indian Society for Cotton Improvement, and College of Development Communication of the University of the Philippines Los Baños. The project was implemented and funded by ISAAA and John Templeton Foundation.
The first farmer-adopters were mostly area leaders and village chiefs, the report says. Other early adopters included farmers who participated in the field demonstrations.
Being the first batch of farmers who witnessed the benefits of the technology, they were inclined to share what they experienced to their relatives, neighbors, and friends, the report suggests.
Aside from the first adopters, private traders or seed sellers obtaining supplies from private companies, were also influential in the adoption of biotech crops. Economic, political, cultural, and agriculture-related factors also facilitated the spread of the technology in farming communities.
In the three countries, lack of knowledge and wrong information about biotech crops contributed to the delay of biotech crop adoption, the report says. Thus, the researchers recommended for stronger farmer-to-farmer education where farmers will learn from the knowledge and experiences of their co-farmers.
The highlights of the study are compiled in the publication Cadres of Change: Transforming Biotech Farmers in China, India, and the Philippines.
Download a copy of the report at on ISAAA's website, and view a video on the report below.