SÃO PAULO, BRAZIL — The Brazilian wheat millers association, Abitrigo, released a statement on Oct. 14 opposing the approval of genetically modified wheat products for sale in Brazil.

Abitrigo said the approval of GM wheat for sale would make imports more costly and impact prices on the domestic market.

The statement was in response to the recent news that Argentina, Brazil’s largest wheat supplier, had approved new genetically modified wheat that can resist drought and tolerates the herbicide glufosinate sodium.

Argentina accounts for about 60% of Brazil’s annual wheat imports, according to Abitrigo.

Abitrigo noted that for 30 years the genetic modification of wheat has been the subject of analysis by the international scientific community.

“These analyses have determined, until now, the non-approval of the use of GM wheat because no evident benefits to people have been identified, being the exclusive object of seeking to increase the productivity of the field,” Abitrigo said.

The association added, “We have not identified any movement in demand from Brazilian consumers for transgenic solutions.”

Brazil typically imports more wheat than it produces. In 2020-21, the USDA projects Brazilian wheat production at 6.6 million tonnes, with imports pegged at 6.7 million tonnes.