Green call to slaughter GM cattle muddled thinking
Green call to slaughter GM cattle involved in search for MS cure "muddled thinking" - minister
Agriculture Minister Jim Sutton said the attitude of the Green Party to the successful court challenge to the Environmental Risk Management Authority's approval of an application for genetic modification of cattle was deeply disappointing.
He said the cows in the experiment were already bearing genetically-modified offspring which might have to be destroyed
"This was not a willy-nilly release of genetically-modified material," Mr Sutton said.
"This is controlled scientific research aiming to develop an effective treatment for people suffering from multiple sclerosis. This is a devastating disease and it is cruel to snatch away the hope of a cure."
Mr Sutton said he was disappointed the Green party and other groups opposed to genetic modification of the environment had not thought more carefully about the consequences of their campaign on people and animals.
"The Greens opposed this research on the grounds that cows are treated as 'disposable production units'. Now they want to solve this perceived problem by killing both the cows and their unborn offspring. If that is not treating them as 'disposable', I don't know what is.
"The Greens are guilty of muddled thinking. The court did not rule that these calves are a danger - it ruled that ERMA's consideration of the original application had not fully met the requirements of law - literally, a legal technicality."