Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | Video | Questions Of the Day | Search


Deformed calves don't enhance NZ image, AgResearch

4 Sept 2008

Deformed calves don't enhance NZ's image, AgResearch

A long press statement by AgResearch today in which it tries to justify its application to genetically engineer a wide range of animals, plus human and monkey cells, inadvertently shows sad downsides to GE research such as deformed foetuses and calves.

"In its statement today, the Crown research institute makes some outrageous claims as 'facts' in the 35 questions it asks and answers for itself headed 'Fact or Fiction'," Greens Co-Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons says.

"For example it admits a less than 9 percent live birth rate, aborted deformed foetuses, deformed calves, gangrenous udders and `animals suffering from respiratory conditions', but denies there are animal welfare concerns.

"It says genetic engineering 'can enhance New Zealand's clean, green image'. This is despite a consumer movement worldwide over the past 10 years against GE food and the fact our GE-free agricultural industry could be a major marketing advantage in the same way as nuclear-free is.

"It tries to refute that the application side-steps the Government's policy of dealing with GE applications on a case by case basis, but then says it 'allows us flexibility to do this'."

Ms Fitzsimons called on AgResearch to stop trying to cover its application with spin and come clean on which parts of New Zealand are likely to be used in outside experiments as new GE testing grounds.

"This application in four parts lists numerous animal and human cells and other animal body parts to be host organisms for engineering. It could allow AgResearch to develop unlimited numbers of GE animals without telling us which specific genes and associated genetic material they intend to use, and without going back to the Environmental Risk Management Authority (ERMA) for further approval," she says.

Whole animals the Crown research institute wants to genetically engineer for "outside containment" are llamas, alpacas, sheep, cows, pigs, goats, buffalo, deer and horses.

"AgResearch says it has 'developed a world leading capability in transgenic livestock research' and talks about creating 'sustainable wealth' but the fact is it wants to turn New Zealand into a giant GE laboratory to boost its own corporate plans at the expense of our long-term image, and without taking into account the huge risk of something going wrong," Ms Fitzsimons says.

Public submissions on the application are being made via the website and close on October 31.


© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Back Again: Government Approves TPP11 Mandate

The Government has approved a negotiating mandate for Trans-Pacific Partnership 11 (TPP11), which will ensure New Zealand businesses remain competitive in overseas markets.

Trade Minister Todd McClay says New Zealand will be pushing for the minimal number of changes possible to the original TPP agreement, something that the remaining TPP11 countries have agreed on. More>>




Gordon Campbell: On Why Labour Isn’t Responsible For Barnaby Joyce

As a desperate Turnbull government tries to treat the Barnaby Joyce affair as a Pauline Hanson fever dream – blame it on the foreigners! We’re the victims of the dastardly New Zealand Labour Party! – our own government has chosen to further that narrative, and make itself an accomplice. More>>


Rail: Greens Back Tauranga – Hamilton – Auckland Service

The Green Party today announced that it will trial a passenger rail service between Auckland, Hamilton and Tauranga starting in 2019, when it is in government. More>>


Housing: Voluntary Rental Warrant Of Fitness For Wellington

Wellington City Council is partnering with the University of Otago, Wellington, to launch a voluntary Rental Warrant of Fitness for minimum housing standards in Wellington, Mayor Justin Lester has announced. More>>


Treaty: Agreement In Principle Signed With Moriori

“The Crown acknowledges Moriori was left virtually landless from 1870, hindering its cultural, social and economic development. The Crown also acknowledges its contribution to the myths that the people of Moriori were racially inferior and became extinct." More>>


Susan Devoy: Call For Inquiry Into State Abuse Reaches UN

Race Relations Commissioner Dame Susan Devoy is in Geneva and has asked a United Nations committee to urge the New Zealand government to initiate an inquiry into the physical and sexual abuse of children and disabled people held in state institutions. More>>


(Not National): Cross-Party Agreement On Pike River Re-Entry

The commitment was signed this afternoon by the leaders of Labour, United Future, The Maori Party, and the Green Party and, together with the earlier commitment by New Zealand First, means that there is now a Parliamentary majority behind the families’ fight for truth and justice. More>>






Featured InfoPages

Opening the Election