Innovation Seminar Series

Comparing the adoption of genetically modified canola in Canada and Australia

Presented by Scott Biden, M.Sc. Candidate, Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics, University of Saskatchewan


This thesis evaluates the impacts of incorporating a socio-economic consideration (SEC) into national regulation on genetically modified (GM) crops. Australia approved the cultivation of GM canola through a science-based risk as-sessment in 2003, but allowed state moratoria to be instituted on an SEC of possible trade impacts in the years 2004 until 2008 and 2010 in the main canola growing states. This evaluation uses the Canadian experience to create an S-curve of adoption to measure the opportunity costs of the SEC-based moratoria on environmental impact, green-house gas emissions, yield, and gross margins between the years 2004 and 2014. The objective of this work is to gain insight into the impact of SECs on GM crop policy, with special respect to the Cartagena Protocol on Biodiversity and international trade obligations of the World Trade Organization.