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

 


Trade Stance Threatens Farmers

Trade Stance Threatens Farmers With Cost of Bio-security Insurance

Government policy holding free trade as a priority over bio-security could leave farmers facing hugely increased insurance costs to protect their capacity to meet export quality and safety standards.

A report on co-existence of production systems by the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) shows that an official policy to allow companies to cause widespread contamination of GM seed without liability, means farmers will be left to carry the costs of crop protection.

The USDA report on “Enhancing Co-existence” (1) says that expensive insurance is the best solution for US farmers to the problem of GE contamination of crops. The report from the UDSA AC21 group acknowledges that GE contamination will occur but supports the power of Monsanto to litigate any farmer who saves seed accidentally contaminated with GE.

There is concern that the US could now promote this policy as part of the closed-door negotiations of the Trans Pacific Trade agreement (TPPA). Farmers should be demanding protection against the TPPA forcing costs onto New Zealand farmers in the form of 'deregulation' of bio-security standards designed to benefit agribusiness and corporate interests.

"Such an approach to trade could see other bio-security costs directed onto farmers", said Jon Carapiet, spokesman for GE-FreeNZ in food and environment.

"The argument that farmers must pay the costs of protection against GM contamination could be extended to other costs vital to maintain the integrity of the food system."

"This is a warning for farmers in New Zealand and other states in the TPPA, not to allow what is happening in the US, to happen in our own countries", says Claire Bleakley president of GE-free NZ in food and environment.

"The agro-chemical companies have appointed themselves sheriff and jury. Their employees can enter any field and take samples of a farmer’s crop to make sure he is not growing their patented seed."

The next TPPA meeting is being held in Auckland in early December. There must be a clear rejection of an push by the US to force farmers to accept contamination or to undermine our zero- tolerance for GE protecting our GE-free exports and reputation for food safety.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Gordon Campbell:
On Anne Tolley’s
Callous Folly

Years ago, I remember someone in the Heath Ministry telling me off the record that regulatory oversight in this country largely consisted in ‘waiting for something to turn green or fall off somebody’ before the authorities would swing into action...

Last week’s conflict between Social Development Minister Anne Tolley and District Court judge Carolyn Henwood illustrated quite a few of the flaws in the system. More>>

 

Members’ Bills: Greens' Domestic Violence And Loans Bills Pulled From Ballot

Jan Logie’s Domestic Violence-Victims' Protection Bill introduces workplace protections for victims of domestic violence, including allowing victims to request paid domestic violence leave for up to 10 days... Gareth Hughes’ Bill allows Kiwis with student loans to defer their student loan repayments into a first home savings scheme. More>>

ALSO:

IPCA: Police Did Not 'Deliberately' Use Pepper Spray On 10-Year-Old

"When spraying the man, the officer did not properly consider the necessity of using pepper spray in a confined space, the likelihood that it would affect the other innocent passengers or the fact that he was using a more powerful spray." More>>

ALSO:

Donor Bill Passes: Full Income Compensation For Live Organ Donors

Unanimous cross-party support for the Compensation for Live Organ Donors Bill represents a critical step in reducing the burgeoning waiting list for kidney donations, according to Kidney Health New Zealand chief executive Max Reid. More>>

ALSO:

Earthquake Response: Emergency Legislation Prepared

Three new Bills have been drafted in the wake of the magnitude 7.8 earthquake on November 14 to ensure the government can enable affected communities to respond quickly and efficiently. More>>

ALSO:

Housing MPs: New Building(s) For Parliament

A new building will be erected on Parliament grounds to house Members of Parliament and their staff who currently work in leased accommodation in Bowen House. The plan has cross-Party support, apart from NZ First, said Parliament’s Speaker, Rt Hon David Carter. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news