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

 


Green Party issues details of report on GenePool

A parliamentary select committee report has confirmed that nearly all last year's expenditure by the genetic engineering lobby group Gene Technology Information Trust (usually called GenePool) went to the public relations firm Communications Trumps.

The education and science committee report also includes a heading "Conflict of interest" which says, "At the same time as it [Communications Trumps] was assisting the trust it was also advising King Salmon, a company which used gene technology to alter its product". The report's conclusion says that one of the "aspects about the operations of the trust" that gave cause for unease was: "The trust's pamphlet which appears to provide only one side of the issue". Another was: "The central role of Communications Trumps, which was also acting for a company using gene technology".

The report says: "We received the trust's income and expenditure account for the period ending 31 December 1998. It shows that the trust's total expenditure was $196,314.98. Of that, $189,140.42 was paid to a public relations firm, Communications Trumps".

Green Party Co-Leader Jeanette Fitzsimons said today: "I am relieved that we now know what we suspected all along - that Communications Trumps received most of GenePool's funds, and that taxpayer money has been used to promote genetic engineering. Communications Trumps was closely associated with the trust, sharing office facilities and staff.

"I remain disturbed that there is nothing to stop this scenario being played out again when GenePool's successor launches itself, something I am expecting any day."

Income is also included in the report, showing taxpayers spent more than $100,000 funding GenePool. This included $30,625 from Crown research institutes, $70,000 from government science grants, while $27,500 came from Monsanto. Ms Fitzsimons said she was concerned that GenePool had long claimed to be an unbiased education trust, with the stated purpose (according to the committee report) of "providing authoritative gene technology information to enable New Zealanders to make informed choices about the use of the technology".

"We now know that it received a `substantial donation from Monsanto' in the words of the committee's report and that the trust's pamphlet `appears to provide only one side of the issue'."

In April this year Ms Fitzsimons released a leaked document written by Communications Trumps. The document, prepared for New Zealand King Salmon, advised the firm that in relation to its genetic engineering programme, "issues such as deformities, lumps on heads etc should not be mentioned at any point to any outside".

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Scoop Editor "Ask me anything" : Scoop's 'Invisible Paywall'

Operation Chrysalis: The Final Countdown - Thanks & There's Still Time To Pledge

Phew! We are now counting down the hours to the end of this crowd-funding campaign at 11pm on Sunday. Thankyou to all those Scoop readers and supporters who have pledged already. You have been awesome. But this is not over yet. More>>

 
 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

IPCA Reports: Significant Problems In Police Custody

In releasing two reports today, the Independent Police Conduct Authority has highlighted a number of significant problems with the way in which Police deal with people who are detained in Police cells. More>>

ALSO:

Inspector-General of Intelligence and Security: Inquiry Into GCSB Pacific Allegations

The complaints follow recent public allegations about GCSB activities. The complaints, and these public allegations, raise wider questions regarding the collection, retention and sharing of communications data. More>>

ALSO:

TPPA Investment Leak: "NZ Surrender To US" On Corporates Suing Governments

Professor Jane Kelsey: ‘As anticipated, the deal gives foreign investors from the TPPA countries special rights, and the power to sue the government in private offshore tribunals for massive damages if new laws, or even court decisions, significantly affected their bottom line’. More>>

ALSO:

Werewolf: The Myth Of Steven Joyce

Gordon Campbell: The myth of competence that’s been woven around Steven Joyce – the Key government’s “Minister of Everything” and “Mr Fixit” – has been disseminated from high-rises to hamlets, across the country... More>>

ALSO:

RMTU: No Public Submissions On International Government Procurement Deal

“The government is preparing to assent to the Government Procurement Agreement, a World Trade Organisation Treaty which opens up New Zealand Government contracts to foreign companies and closes the door on local businesses and their workers. However the Foreign Affairs, Defence and Trade Select Committee is refusing to take public submissions on the decision.” More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell:
On Pacific Spying

So New Zealand spied on its friends and allies in the Pacific – and has not only been passing on the results to the NSA, but has apparently passed on the details of the Pacific’s relations with Taiwan to our other best friends, the Chinese. On the side, the Key government has also been using the security services to gauge the chances of Trade Minister Tim Groser landing the top job at the WTO... More>>

ALSO:

State Housing Transfer: Salvation Army Opts Out

The Salvation Army has decided against negotiating with Government for the transfer of Housing New Zealand stock.
More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Parliament
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news