URBANA–Divergent perspectives are combined with comprehensive information to provide an overview of a hot topic in agriculture today–Genetically Modified Organisms–in a soon-to-be-published book edited by a University of Illinois associate professor of agricultural and consumer economics.

Genetically Modified Organisms in Agriculture: Economics and Politics achieves a number of goals, said its editor, Gerald C. Nelson.

"The book includes the perspectives of different groups involved in GMO-related controversies and provides readable coverage of the overall question for all interested parties," said Nelson.

Nelson noted that genetically modified crops are a topic of high controversy among scientists, regulators, consumers, farmers, and politicians.

"Despite potential benefits, public hostility toward these crops is causing dramatic changes to import/export policies, food safety regulations, and agricultural practices around the world," said Nelson.

The book is divided into three parts. Part one provides a comprehensive look at the science, economics, and politics of the use of agricultural GMOs, including in-depth coverage of the three most widely-used GMOs–Bt corn and cotton and glyphosate-resistant soybeans.

In part two, leading figures with widely different views on the question debate. Authors in this section represent such groups as the American Farm Bureau, the European Union Commission, Consumer's Union, and Monsanto. The book's final section provides detailed information on selected topics, including the history of biotechnological innovations, the techniques of biotechnology, and the latest research on the consequences of Bt corn for the monarch butterfly.

Published by the Academic Press, the book sells for $69.95. Copies may be obtained by contacting the Academic Press at 6277 Sea Harbor Drive, Orlando, FL 32887, e-mail: ap@acad.com. , or on the Web at: Academic Press.