But bugs aren’t the only pests that affect crops — what about weeds? One reason farmers have embraced GMO Farming methods is that they allow for milder and more effective herbicides, making it possible to spray less often 10http://www.isaaa.org/resources/publications/briefs/52/download/isaaa-brief-52-2016.pdf but with more targeted precision. Because these improved herbicides break down in the soil more quickly, they have far less impact on the environment.11http://www.tandfonline.com/doi/full/10.4161/gmcr.20061
But let’s be honest. Most people aren’t just worried about the natural world; they’re wondering if there’s pesticide residue on their produce. The truth is, over 99 percent of any pesticide residue on a plant is made organically by the plant itself. It’s a natural defense. And the fraction of a percent left? The research shows it’s safe.12https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC1253709/
Of course, if we use any weed-control method too much, for too long, weeds can adapt. So many farmers go out of their way to make sure weeds don’t get the chance. Smart stewardship practices, like crop rotation, ensure GMO Farming will remain sustainable for years to come.