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

 


Leader's Vision Is a Threat to Farmers' Future

Leader's Vision Is a Threat to Farmers' Future


The appointment of Dr. William Rolleston as president of Federated Farmers, and of Ian McKenzie and Anders Crowfoot to the Board [1], signals that the direction has been set toward introduction of the environmentally devastating technology that is GE farming.

Dr. Rolleston has worked his way up from being the public advocate for the Life Sciences Network, through the funding arm of the Science and Innovation Board, to become leader of Federated Farmers.

There are fears that 'the man for Monsanto' is now president of the organisation and will push his vision of releasing GMOs in New Zealand with the argument that this will allow "farmers to choose".

The reality experienced overseas is that GMO contamination spreads through the system with the effect of denying farmers and consumers any choice.

The attempt to have GE crops "coexist" with other farming approaches has led to contamination of non-GE seed stocks, increased weed and pest devastation, and harm to soil ecosystems, water and non-target insects.

The global supply of soy is a case in point, where even organic and non-GE identity-preserved production is constantly under threat from the spread of GE soy.

"Last year's study by The McGuiness Institute shows that the millions spent on the GE route has not benefited New Zealand farmers," said Jon Carapiet, spokesman for GE-Free NZ. (2)

"The report says New Zealand's best option is to restore a moratorium on environmental release of GMOs. Federated Farmers should heed that advice if it really has the interests of the farming community at heart."

“The farming sector is under great pressure to fulfil the supply demand from national and international markets. Research into sustainable and organic farming systems has almost been shut down. The Biological Husbandry Unit in Lincoln is seriously underfunded, yet AgResearch has spent over 25% of its budget on genetically engineering forage plants for a market that does not want to go down the GE path," said Claire Bleakley, president of GE-Free NZ.

"Funding for research that is directly relevant to sustainability, safe GE-free food and the livelihoods of the farming community must be the strategic focus."
The only light in the election of Dr. Rolleston is the fact he is not just pro-GE but also claims to be pro-science (3). The science to date has shown that genetically engineered farming and foods have caused increased environmental risks, yield reductions, and contaminate other farming systems.
Dr. Rolleston's recent praise for Argentina's use of GE crops ignores the darker side of what has happened to families who work and live in fields adjacent to GE farms.

Their experience has included reproductive failures, giving birth to deformed children and serious health problems.

We do not want any deterioration of our environment or food supply in New Zealand. The Government must ensure that the research focus is directed toward the gold standard of sustainable, safe agroecology. This is what consumers expect and our export markets demand.

New Zealand must protect its global point of difference as a producer of safe, clean, GE-Free food.

References:
(1) Introducing you to your new President & Board 7 July 2014 (Federated Farmers)
(2)http://mcguinnessinstitute.org/Site/Publications/Media_Releases_Home.aspx
(3) Could pro-GM lobbyist fracture Fed Farmers’ support? The National Business Review / June 27, 2014

ENDS:

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Parliament Headlines | Politics Headlines | Regional Headlines

TV3 Videos: Key's Flip-Flop Over Whale Oil Texts | Slater
Reaction: Greens | More
Dim-Post Link: The Very Odd Slightly Left Of Centre

Gordon Campbell: On Government Arrogance

Right now, National is ramming anti-terrorism measures through Parliament. This legislation will grant the SIS the power to carry out 48 hour bouts of surveillance on anyone without a warrant, and will bestow on government the power to unilaterally revoke anyone’s passports and thus deny them the freedom to travel.

Ludicrously, the public has been given exactly one day to make submissions on these major infringements of their civil liberties. Despite Finlayson’s misleading signals on RNZ that these are only stopgaps until next year’s full review of our security laws, the measures in question will not, in fact, expire until 2018.

Why the insane rush? Good question. More>>

 
 

Parliament Today:

Key Texts With Whale Oil Released: PM Can’t Be Trusted Over Dirty Politics Defence - Greens

John Key’s answers to questions about dirty politics can’t be trusted, after he was forced to admit that he had misled journalists and Parliament about contact with attack blogger Cameron Slater, said the Green Party today.. More>>

ALSO:

Temporary Release Crackdown Continues: Corrections Review Of Phillip Smith Case

“The review by Corrections’ Chief Custodial Officer reveals that the plan for Smith’s series of temporary releases was overly ambitious and misinformed. He’s a highly manipulative and deceptive person who although technically eligible, should not have been considered for temporary release." More>>

ALSO:

White Ribbon Day: Govt Resumes Sexual Violence Trial Proceedings Work

Justice Minister Amy Adams has asked the Law Commission to resume work on proposals for better supporting victims of sexual violence through the criminal process. The Law Commission will revisit its previous work on alternative pre-trial and trial processes to identify options for improving complainants’ experience in court. More>>

ALSO:

"New Faces, Wise Heads": Andrew Little Announces New Labour Line Up

Labour Leader Andrew Little today announced a bold new caucus line up which brings forward new talent and draws on the party’s depth of experience. More>>

ALSO:

Gordon Campbell: On Rick Ellis As Te Papa’s New CEO

The recent appointment of former TVNZ boss Rick Ellis to head Te Papa has copped a fair bit of criticism. Much of it has been inspired by the suspicion that Ellis has been hired to pursue the same purely commercial goals as he did at TVNZ, while similarly neglecting the serious cultural side of his mandate. More>>

Passport Cancellation, Surveillance: Draft 'Foreign Fighters Legislation' Released

The final draft of the Countering Terrorist Fighters Legislation Bill contains proposals previously announced by Mr Key in a major national security speech earlier this month. More>>

ALSO:

Related

Joint Statement: Establishment Of NZ-China Strategic Partnership

At the invitation of Governor-General Lt Gen The Rt Hon Sir Jerry Mateparae and Prime Minister The Rt Hon John Key of New Zealand, President Xi Jinping of the People’s Republic of China made a state visit to New Zealand from 19 to 21 November 2014... More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Politics
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news