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Chicago Fed Letter, No. 149, January 2000
Food for Thought—Issues in Agricultural Biotechnology

U.S. farmers have been using advances in technology to increase output and improve productivity for generations. Well-known sources of productivity gains in agriculture include increased mechanization; improved plant and animal nutrition; and the use of pesticides to control insects and weeds. Especially important has been improved plant and livestock genetics, particularly the development of plant hybrids that bring higher yields. These changes have provided extraordinary benefits to U.S. consumers in the form of a nutritious, high-quality and inexpensive food supply.

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