Tegel Bullied Into Responding To A Non-Issue
“Tegel Foods Ltd has been bullied into making a decision which does nothing to reduce risk associated with eating its product,” the Chairman of the Life Sciences Network Dr William Rolleston said today.
“It’s just indicative of the warped sense of values which has started to twist the debate about GM.”
“The Greens, because they focus on a non-issue when it comes to food safety ignore a much more persistent problem involving food safety.
“Although there is no known case of illness from genetically modified organisms, Tegel was forced to announce earlier this week that it would feed its chickens only on soy-meal that was not from genetically modified soy beans.
“The most real food safety issue with chicken is not what chickens eat but how chicken meat is stored and prepared.
“Green activists, by focussing on a non-issue, divert people’s attention from the real cause of illness, campylobacteriosis.
“In a recent article, Consumer Magazine states that chicken is an inherently dangerous food and that chicken should carry labels that clearly and prominently tell consumers how to prepare, cook and store this food in order to minimize the risk of serious illness.
“Spot testing showed that 41 of 50 chickens obtained from supermarkets and butchers were contaminated with Campylobacter species known to cause illness.
“A recent report from the Environmental Science Research Institute notes that New Zealand has the highest known rates of Campylobacteriosis in the world. The annual cost of this disease to the New Zealand health system is estimated at $40 million.
“Up to 9,000 New Zealanders suffer from Campylobacter infections each year through poor food handling but nowhere in the world has anybody been identified as contacting illness from eating genetically modified organisms,” concluded Dr Rolleston.