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Moratorium on GEOs


PRESS RELEASE from PHYSICIANS AND SCIENTISTS FOR RESPONSIBLE GENETICS
18 October 2001


Moratorium on GEOs

Physicians and Scientists for Responsible Genetics (PSRG) call on the government to freeze all releases of genetically engineered organisms into the environment, including field trials. Such an action would appropriately reflect the Recommendations of the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification and allow independent scientific safety assessments to be made.

It is now overwhelmingly evident from experiences overseas that this would be a common-sense, precautionary action with regard to the release of genetically engineered organisms in NZ, be they field trials or commercial plantings, and reflect responsible stewardship.

NZ scientists and medical researchers - and the knowledge economy - can continue their experimentation in containment as they have been doing for two decades or more. Banning release into the environment of GEOs will not restrict the furtherance of scientific endeavours. Indeed, it may leave us with an excellent lead to help resolve some of the problems currently experienced in North America and Europe following the release of GEOs into the environment.

Overseas biotech corporates are wanting to use NZ to produce non-GE seed for the world market because of the widespread contamination in their own growing areas. And, as our export markets have clearly indicated, a GE free status would increase our exports.

(202 words)

440a Otumoetai Road, TAURANGA, NEW ZEALAND
Telephone and fax 64 7 576 5721
Email roberta@clear.net.nz
18 October 2001

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