The Refuge Area is an essential tool to ensure the preservation of agricultural biotechnology in the long term. In this type of area, seeds without Bt technology are cultivated, in order to increase the possibility of mating between susceptible and resistant insects. This ensures that the next generation of insects will be susceptible and therefore can be controlled by Bt technology in crops.
Genetically modified plants, which express Bt proteins, exert continuous insecticidal action against pests and, therefore, the adoption of refuge area practices is required to preserve the susceptibility of insects. Consequently, a refuge area is one of the best methods for the soybean farmer to protect his investment in technology.
It is important to pay attention to the Refuge Area structure. The percentage of non-Bt plants to be used varies according to the crop. In the case of soybean, 20% of the crop should be planted with conventional seeds. In addition, the Refuge Areas must be located at a maximum distance of 800 meters from the crop with Bt technology.