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General Information

Document type
  • Peer-reviewed journal article
GE organism
  • soybean, corn, cotton, canola, sugar beet, alfalfa
GE trait
  • herbicide tolerance
  • USA


  • mixed
Safety for environment
  • negative effect

Navigating a critical juncture for sustainable weed management

Mortensen, DA; Egan, JF; Maxwell, BD; Ryan, MR; Smith, RG
BioScience. 2012 62(1):75-84

Link to full text (journal may charge for access)

DOI: 10.1525/bio.2012.62.1.12 ISSN: 1525-3244


Agricultural weed management has become entrenched in a single tactic—herbicide—resistant crops—and needs greater emphasis on integrated practices that are sustainable over the long term. In response to the outbreak of glyphosate-resistant weeds, the seed and agrichemical industries are developing crops that are genetically modified to have combined resistance to glyphosate and synthetic auxin herbicides. This technology will allow these herbicides to be used over vastly expanded areas and will likely create three interrelated challenges for sustainable weed management. First, crops with stacked herbicide resistance are likely to increase the severity of resistant weeds. Second, these crops will facilitate a significant increase in herbicide use, with potential negative consequences for environmental quality. Finally, the short-term fix provided by the new traits will encourage continued neglect of public research and extension in integrated weed management. Here, we discuss the risks to sustainable agriculture from the new resistant crops and present alternatives for research and policy.


agriculture production, agroecosystems, transgenic organisms, sustainability, biotechnology


Funding source
  • Not reported
Funding country
  • Not reported
Funding type
  • Not reported

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Cite this study


Mortensen, DA, JF Egan, BD Maxwell, MR Ryan, RG Smith. "Navigating a critical juncture for sustainable weed management." BioScience 62.1 (2012): 75-84. Web. 7 Dec. 2023.


Mortensen, DA., Egan, JF., Maxwell, BD., Ryan, MR., & Smith, RG. (2012). Navigating a critical juncture for sustainable weed management. BioScience, 62(1), 75-84. doi:10.1525/bio.2012.62.1.12

Please verify citations before use, citations are automatically generated based on information stored within the GENERA database and therefore may or may not be correct.