Coimbatore: India has overtaken the US to become the second largest cotton producing country in the World, after China, a study by International Service For the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Application(ISAAA) said.
India which was having one of the lowest cotton yields in the World has become a net cotton exporter, potentially five million bales in 2007-08, the study said.
Bt cton was a major factor contributing to higher rate of production from 15.8 million bales in 2001-02 to 31 million bales in 2007-08, it said.
Releasing the brief of Global Status of Commercialized Biotech/GM crops:2007, Dr C P Thiagarajan, a former professor of Tamil Nadu Agricultural University, said India experienced the highest proportional increase in 2007 for the third consecutive year with a 63% gain to 6.2 million hectare of BT cotton.
The income of growers in India has also increased upto Rs10,000 or more per hectare.
The studies have shown strong farmer confidence in the crops with nine of 10 Indian farmers replanting biotech cotton year on year, ISAAA said.