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ERMA failing the public by sidelining ethics

GE Free New Zealand (in Food and Environment) Press Release 13.8.02
ERMA failing the public by sidelining ethical and economic issues

ERMA hearings into AgResearch's plans for animal experimentation incorporating a range of other species' genes into cows, have faced legal challenges on their first day, but look set to continue.

The ERMA hearings have already been boycotted by some of those making submissions because of a lack of faith in the ERMA process. On Wednesday GE-Free NZ spokesperson Jon Carapiet will present on behalf of a number of organisations who have challenged the process.

"The failure of the ERMA system to respond to the Royal Commission guidance on ethics means the whole process is flawed," says Mr Carapiet. "Many people who wanted to speak have been excluded from doing so because ERMA has refused to hold regional hearings."

Mr Carapiet will speak to submissions from GE-Free NZ (in food and environment), GE-Free Northland, and Friends of the Earth, as well as his own submission which was one of over 800 submissions pleading with ERMA to reject the application.

Mr Carapiet says the whole process is failing to answer vital questions that need to be answered.

"Why are we doing this at all- when there are alternatives? Who will actually profit financially? Who is carrying the risk? How can the Bio Ethics Council be brought into the loop before it is too late, and if it is already too late, who is responsible for allowing that to happen?"

Ends.

Jon Carapiet is speaking at the hearings after 10 am - he can be contacted on 025 667 5008

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