Fake seeds 'limiting Pakistani farm output'

Cotton harvestingAgricultural experts have called on the Pakistani government to stamp out the counterfeit seeds that are holding back farm productivity.

Farmers and agricultural companies are particularly concerned about the spread of fake Bt cotton seeds, The Express Tribune reports. Academics from the University of Agriculture Faisalabad report that just four of the 52 Bt cotton varieties available in Pakistan has the standard gene expression, suggesting fakes are widespread.

"The sale of illegal and/or substandard another important issue that needs to be addressed by the government on a priority basis to tap the true potential of agricultural productivity in the country," attendees of a Farmers Associates Pakistan meeting said is a statement.

Planting of counterfeit seeds limits the acreage covered by high-yielding strains. For cotton, a key commercial crop in Pakistan, failure to maximise yield could have far-reaching consequences for the economy. Faking of seeds for food crops could have a similarly devastating effect on the lives of people in Pakistan.  

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