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Meat Exports Threatened by Animal-Feed Loophole

Meat Exports Threatened by Animal-Feed Loophole

Ministers Urged to Act as Meat Exports Threatened by Animal-Feed Loophole

The government must act quickly to ensure no GM grain is imported for animal feed for New Zealand animals as the current lack of regulation represents a serious threat to our meat export industry.

"The international trend in food standards is that animal feed must be GM-free or the products of those animals are likely to be rejected by companies across Europe and Asia who have GM-Free policies," says Jon Carapiet for GE-Free NZ (in food and environment). "That includes the world's major food manufacturers and in some countries -all the major supermarket brands too.”

Unless New Zealand feed-manufacturers ensure a system to avoid importation of GM-grains they risk our meat exports being rejected and will undermine the national 'Brand image' which our exports and tourism rely on.Comments today by Mike Brooks of the Feed Manufacturers Association on National Radio's Rural Report indicate that though feed produced from NZ grains is GE-Free, there is no system in place to stop GE feed being imported.”

As well as an economic threat this is a threat to public health as no tests have been done into the impact of GM grains on animals and their products, or the effect of those products when eaten by other animals- including people.

" This is a Russian-roulette experiment on the food chain. Just as overseas authorities have failed, The Food Safety Authority has never done tests on meat or milk from animals that are genetically modified, cloned or fed GM feed. The public health issues are being sidelined," says Mr Carapiet.

The fact that no scientific tests have been done is part of the reason why products from animals given GE-feed have been rejected overseas in what is clearly a marketing trend. GE-Free NZ (in food and environment) is calling on the Agriculture Minister to urgently introduce regulations to keep GE feed out of the local food chain and to work with MAF and the Feed Industry to ensure compliance. New Zealand's exports are under threat.

Some New Zealand meat producers are already aware that they must not supply animals produced with GM feed to clients overseas, but their is clearly a lack of proper regulation and this must be addressed.

ENDS Media contact Jon Carapiet 09 815 3370

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