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GE Safety Claims Defy New Overseas Reports

Green Safe Food spokesperson Sue Kedgley said today she was astounded that two new GE foods were being recommended for use here when overseas authorities are saying that more testing of GE foods is needed before they are released commercially.

The Australia New Zealand Food Authority yesterday released for public comment reports recommending that a new GE canola and GE corn be allowed into our food chain.

Ms Kedgley said either ANZFA is not up with the international play or they are ignoring the latest evidence.

"Late last month, the French food safety authority said that current safety testing is insufficient and that research needs to be done into the impacts of prolonged exposure, especially looking for gradual development of allergic reactions," she said.

"The French authority is also calling for "subchronic" toxicity rests, which it points out is the only way of assessing long-term impacts on immune, hormonal and reproductive systems."

Ms Kedgley said a British report quoted in the Herald today as backing the safety of GE foods had been reported completely differently by the British media this week.

"The Independent points out that the report questions whether commonly used safety tests are adequate and calls for more work to rule out possible links between GE crops and allergic reactions.

"The report says babies may be more vulnerable than adults to developing allergies and calls for more work to be done in regard to vulnerable groups eating GE products designed to be consumed as a single food over extended periods of time. The most obvious example is babies who may be drinking soy milk formula at a very young age," she said.

Ms Kedgley said ANZFA should be monitoring high-risk groups such as babies or people with a history of allergies, as recommended in the report.

"At the moment our consumption of GE foods amounts to a gigantic experiment on the whole population. At the very least we should be monitoring to see whether eating these foods does produce allergic reactions, especially in vulnerable people."


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