produced, germination and overwintering characteristics of seeds, or the number of days from planting until first boll production or flowering. The herbicide-tolerant cultivar’s sensitivity to all commonly used, registered cotton herbicides was not altered except for glyphosate tolerance.
F. Vertical Transfer of the New Genes
It is apparent from the data that outcrossing from the transformed cultivar to other domestic cottons does and will occur. Of course, this kind of gene transfer happens in nature constantly. Because cotton producers purchase new seed every year, the cross-pollination phenomenon does not have a significant impact on the quality or nature of seed produced in a field where cross pollination has occurred. Seeds from all transgenic cotton cultivars will still have to meet existing certification requirements for cotton seed production.
The noncultivated Gossypium spp. found in the Southwestern United States and Hawaii are not considered weeds, and introgression of the new genes into these species would not significantly increase any of the 10 characteristics of weeds unless selection pressure favors these characteristics. With regard to glyphosate- tolerant cotton, we believe that introgression of this trait into noncultivated Gossypium spp. would not be highly favored in the absence of herbicide application. Herbicide application is likely only in agricultural settings, not in wild stands. In addition, in Hawaii, where G. tomentosum is found, cotton is not commercially produced. The great majority of cotton grown in that State is in experimental plots where cotton breeding programs operate. Cotton breeders generally bag or clip the flowers when performing crosses between plants. This practice significantly reduces the chance that flowers will be visited by pollinating insects and thus reduces the likelihood of gene movement.
SAMPLE PETITION—Herbicide-Tolerant Plants