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

 


Myths Revealed About Safety of GE Food


GE Free New Zealand

In Food And Environment Inc.

PO Box 13402, Wellington, NZ


03/04/2014 Myths Revealed About Safety of Genetically Engineered Food

The annual Hot Debate held at Lincoln University, this year focused on GE, revealed startling facts about the absence of food safety research, monitoring and diagnostics.

The debate was introduced by Selwyn District Deputy Mayor Sarah Walters and compered by Kim Hill, and featured six experts in their respective fields from business to research scientists from the Crown Research Institutes. [1]

All the panelists appeared to be unconvinced that there were any benefits to New Zealand from GE at this time, favouring the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification's stance to proceed with caution.

Dr. Tony Connor spoke about the promise of new GE forage grasses to be trialled for 'blockbuster' traits, ignoring the proven success of non-GE alternatives. Though the debate left many statements unchallenged, there was general surprise that common assumptions that GE foods are safe are not based on published data.

When a question was asked of the panel: “As the scientists involved stated that GE foods were safe to eat, would they provide 10 human studies to back up their statements? Would they also advise where the diagnostic tools are available for health professionals to identify if GE food in the human diet may be contributing to illness?”

The shocking answer from the pro GE debaters, Dr. Jon Hickford and Dr. Tony Connor, was “there are no studies." or diagnostic tools for monitoring public health impacts of GE food.

They went on to explain the absence of safety research was because it would be "difficult to get ethical approval to do them on humans”.

The absurdity of the situation was apparent to those attending the debate, and goes to the heart of the global rejection of GE foods by consumers.

“Scientists are unable to test if pesticide-laden GE foods are safe because it would be unethical, yet the population is forced to eat GE foods on the assumption they are safe!” said Claire Bleakley, president of GE-Free NZ in food and environment.

“It was this same mentality that allowed DDT, Thalidomide and PRB’s. Why do cosmetics undergo more stringent testing than GE foods? These are questions we need to ask because we are just "guinea pigs" heading for a serious health disaster now, and for future generations”.

The reality is that New Zealand's success will be undermined by GE in our farming environment, whether it is forage crops, wheat, canola, soy or corn. There is alarm in the community that some researchers and farmer advocacy groups, even within Federated Farmers, are promoting GE options at the expense of existing alternatives.

Panelist Dr. Christine Dann communications manager for OANZ stated, “NZ farmers are already growing plants well ahead of anything GE has to offer. We have the data on the tried and true non-GE cultivars today. It is essential that any research goes into furthering these sustainable options”.

Special interest groups lobbying for commercial release of GE in New Zealand are betraying their own members and threatening exports of clean, safe food that are vital for the economic wellbeing of the country.

References:

[1] Hot Debate http://www.lincoln.ac.nz/News--Events/Events/Kim-Hill/
ENDS:

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

Open Source // Open Society - Full Coverage

Gordon Campbell:
On The Reserve Bank And Auckland Housing

The ‘crisis – what crisis?’ response by the government to the Auckland housing price bubble is no longer acceptable.

So says Reserve Bank governor Grant Spencer – who used unusually frank language in his speech and subsequent interviews yesterday to call for a capital gains tax, and to generally chastise central and local government for their inaction on a threat to the country’s economic health and financial stability.

That threat has been real for some time. The housing price bubble has already created a currency bubble... Undaunted, the government keeps calling this situation a success story. More>>

 

PARLIAMENT TODAY:

Bangladesh: GCSB Dragging NZ Into Human Rights Abuses

The New Zealand government should stop providing intelligence assistance to Bangladeshi security agencies that are known to systematically engage in human rights abuses, said the Green Party today. More>>

ALSO:

Troops Heading To Iraq: Government Must Come Clean On Deployment

New Zealanders deserve more than to hear about their troops’ deployment overseas from Australian media, Opposition Leader Andrew Little says. “News from Australia that Kiwi troops are on their way to Iraq this week is another example of the culture of secrecy and unknown protections around the deployment.” More>>

ALSO:

Image: Strikers And Protestors Join Outside McDonald's

A group of protestors took to McDonald’s Manners St today as a part of the international fast food workers day of action to end zero hour contracts. More>>

ALSO:

Greens: Special Education Funds Not Spent

More than $32 million of funding for children with special needs has not been spent by the Government, despite families of children with special needs complaining for years that they’ve been denied the support they deserve. More>>

ALSO:

John Key: Pre-Budget Speech To Business NZ

So this Government will remain relentlessly focused on improving the competitiveness of our economy... We will continue to give businesses a platform to invest, grow and create jobs in the knowledge they will be backed by a clear and consistent government policy programme. More>>

ALSO:

Multimedia: Andrew Little’s Response To John Key’s Pre-Budget Address

Labour Party leader Andrew Little spoke today on John Key’s pre-budget address this afternoon in Wellington. Little said National has had seven years to achieve a surplus and Kiwis have “fufilled their end of the bargain.” More>>

Surplus Baggage: Key Backs Off ‘Artificial Target’

John Key’s attempt to redefine his cornerstone promise of two election campaigns as an artificial target suggests his other promises are works of fiction, says Labour’s Finance spokesperson Grant Robertson. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On UE Pass Rates And University Dropout Rates

Houston, there is clearly a problem with (a) the plunge in pass rates for University Entrance qualifications, which has been especially steep among Maori students and also a problem with (b) the failure rates for Maori students among those who reach university... Unfortunately the two problems seem related. More>>

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
More RSS  RSS
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news