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Hundreds of delegates hear concern at GM dairy

www.gefree.org.nz
Press Release 29.10.01
Auckland - Monday 29 October

GLOBAL DAIRY SUMMIT: Hundreds of delegates hear Public concern over Genetically Modified dairy foods

Public resistance to GE/GM dairy foods was at the top of the agenda at the Global Dairy Summit which opened in Auckland today.

As delegates arrived at the Aotea Centre, Auckland City, they were presented with an open letter to the Dairy Industry calling on Fonterra, Nestle and other companies supporting GE food research to respect their customers wishes for GM-Free dairy products.

Many delegates were pleased to have the issue raised and delegates from countries in Europe and Asia said their consumers had already made it clear they do not want GE milk products.

The open letter was issued on behalf of concerned New Zealanders who have been shocked at the further one-year delay in labelling of GE foods currently being produced, and who are now awaiting the government's announcement of their response to the Royal Commission.

Despite international consumer rejection of GM foods, without labelling and proper regulation, the public are being denied information and the fundamental right to choose. Existing uses of GE include producing bovine growth-hormone for milk and in New Zealand experiments have begun on transgenic cows with a copy of a human gene.

The open letter to delegates is copied below.
Contact: Susie Lees 03 546 7966

AN OPEN LETTER TO THE GLOBAL DAIRY INDUSTRY FROM THE NEW ZEALAND PUBLIC

Aotearoa / New Zealand, 2001

Dear Delegates,

The global dairy industry risks losing consumer confidence by pushing Genetically Modified food and Genetic Engineering (GE)

All over the world people are saying No! to GM because of cultural, environmental and scientific objections.

In Auckland 15,000 people attended a rally on September 1st in support of a GM-Free Aotearoa /New Zealand, making it one of the largest protest marches in twenty years.

New Zealand consumers reject Fonterra's support for Genetic Modification (GM/GE) research for production of milk and dairy foods.

Using unlabelled GM ingredients denies consumer choice and threatens NZ's exports as markets reject GE-contamination in food.

We urge Fonterra and Nestle to listen to their customers in New Zealand, Australia, Asia, Europe and the Americas.

The world wants dairy foods GM-free !

Yours sincerely

Auckland GE-Free Coalition and the concerned public of Aotearoa / New Zealand

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