Glyphosate Resistance Technology Has Minimal or No Effect on Maize Mineral Content and Yield

Controversy continues to exist regarding whether the transgene for glyphosate resistance (GR) and/or glyphosate applied to GR crops adversely affect plant mineral content. Field studies were conducted in 2013 and 2014 in Stoneville, MS and Urbana, IL to examine this issue in maize. At each location, the experiment was conducted in fields with no history of glyphosate application and fields with several years of glyphosate use preceding the study. Neither glyphosate nor the GR transgene affected yield or mineral content of leaves or seed, except for occasional (<5%) significant effects that were inconsistent across minerals, treatments, and environments. Glyphosate and AMPA (aminomethylphosphonic acid), a main degradation product of glyphosate, were found in leaves from treated plants, but little or no glyphosate and no AMPA was found in maize seeds. These results show that the GR transgene and glyphosate application, whether used for a single year or several years, have no deleterious effect on mineral nutrition or yield of GR maize.