Gordon Campbell | Parliament TV | Parliament Today | News Video | Crime | Employers | Housing | Immigration | Legal | Local Govt. | Maori | Welfare | Unions | Youth | Search


Monsanto apply to have GE wheat allowed in NZ food

Monsanto apply to have GE wheat allowed in NZ food

Monsanto has applied to Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) to allow genetically engineered wheat to be introduced into the New Zealand food chain.

GE wheat has not been approved for human consumption anywhere in the world, although similar applications have been made in Canada and the United States.

Monsanto's "Roundup Ready" wheat is engineered to resist Monsanto's own brand of herbicide "Roundup". Major concerns have been raised over its environmental impact and the difficulty of segregating GE from conventional wheat varieties. Other herbicide resistant crops n such as soy n have led to increases in herbicide use and contamination of GE free crops.

This GE wheat application is part of Monsanto's push to plant GE wheat in Canada and the USA. Widespread opposition to Roundup Ready wheat in these countries has delayed Monsanto's plans for commercial planting until at least 2005. The Canadian Wheat Board is the biggest wheat and barley marketer in the world and they claim that 82% of their international buyers don't want GE wheat.

Wheat has special significance as a staple in the New Zealand diet. It is not just present in foods such as breads, cereals and pastas, but in a wide range of processed foods as a thickener.

Even FSANZ says that the use of GE wheat goes against consumer choice. According to FSANZ documents, a likely impact of approving GE wheat will be.

"Cost to consumers wishing to avoid GM food by a potential restriction of choice of products, or increased prices for non GM food"

Unfortunately, the way FSANZ assess the risks of GE foods is to basically assume they are safe unless proven otherwise. This is the exact opposite of a precautionary approach! FSANZ relies far too heavily on the information provided by the biotech companies themselves.

Despite widespread opposition from consumers, FSANZ has already approved 21 GE crops for human consumption with a further five assessments pending. However, many of these foods are not even on the market and many food companies don't use GE foods because of public opposition.

Information on how to make a submissions is available on: http://www.greenpeace.org.nz/campaigns/ge/wheat_subs.asp

© Scoop Media

Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Principals' Federation:
End Of National Standards

Today the Minister of Education announced that the Government has stopped the controversial National Standards system of assessment and declared them an arbitrary measure which did not raise children's achievement as the previous Government intended.

"This is such a win for all the principals who never believed in national standards and who, for the past decade, have argued for what is morally right for our nation's young people and their learning," said Cormick. More>>


Public Good: People’s Report On Public Broadcasting And Media Presented

The People’s Commission on Public Broadcasting and Media, was crowdfunded and was informed by an extensive consultation, seeking the views of both those working in Media as well as gathering input both online and in person from ordinary Citizens. More>>


RBNZ To RNZB: PM's Press Conference

Prime Minister Jacinda Adern was joined by Minister of Finance Grant Robertson and Minister for Children Tracey Martin to announce the appointment of Adrian Orr as the new Governor of the Reserve Bank and the name change of the Ministry for Vulnerable Children to ‘Oranga Tamariki - Ministry for Children’. More>>


'Taming Globalised Capital': Why Is Labour Supporting Investment Rules In WTO?

‘Today, we learned the new government has added New Zealand’s name to a proposal designed to lead to foreign investment rules in the WTO at this week’s ministerial meeting in Argentina,’ said Auckland University Professor Jane Kelsey. More>>


Gordon Campbell: On The Politics Of Scaring Voters Back Into Line

Fear has always been a useful mobilising tool in politics… yet in 2017, bogeymen of all shapes and sizes seem to have fallen on hard times. For years, the National party had painted itself as being the only reliable defensive bastion against the terrifying prospect of a centre-left government… More>>


Gordon Campbell: On Drinking Water As A Failure Of Political Leadership

It is almost possible to feel sorry for the Health Ministry in their terrible, no good, very bad week... More>>





Featured InfoPages