Video | Business Headlines | Internet | Science | Scientific Ethics | Technology | Search

 


1820 Sheep die grazing GE cotton land

1820 Sheep died grazing on the harvested GE cotton land. Even wearing GE Cotton could cause terrible skin reactions".

The latest studies on GE Cotton farming have raised grave concerns about the safety of GE cotton which is widely used in food as well as in clothing.

A preliminary report released in late April has found that thousands of sheep died after grazing on land where GE cotton had been grown. The sheep and goats started dying after seven days of continuously grazing on tender leaves and pods of Bt cotton that remaind in the fields after picking.[i]

The incident comes to light just as Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) is considering submissions for approval of GE Cotton seed and oil for use in animal feed and the human food chain.[ii] But there is concern that the latest research findings may never be considered by the authorities as the data have been released after the closing date for submissions, and bcause late submissions are not accepted.

"New findings must be considered fully by the FSANZ as the dire effects reported in this research could go unheeded. After 10 years, we still have no diagnostic tools to assess possible reactions to GE food", says Claire Bleakley of GE Free (NZ) in food and Environment, "GE cotton should be properly tested on animals and humans for safety, but so far it has not."

In December a three month study was released which found that workers picking GE cotton suffered severe skin reactions with itching and blistery eruptions leaving a black skin discolouration which was still apparent after 5 months. [iii]

The health of workers must be protected, and also people who buy cotton garments and products made from cotton, like sanitary towels, must be made aware of the possible skin irritations that they may experience.

The British Medical Association has already signalled that GE products could present certain risks, including the creation of drug-resistance in venereal disease as a result of women being exposed to GE constructs in personal hygiene products.

"It is important that cotton products are properly labelled if it has been made from GE cotton fibre" says Ms Bleakley. "Until this happens buyers must seek assurances as to the source of the cotton, or seek to avoid buying products made with cotton from India."

Further, GE Cotton crops have failed in regions of India with many suicides resulting because of the debt accrued from the high cost of growing GE cotton. This has prompted the Indian Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) to concede after three years of commercial cultivation that Mahyco-Monsanto's Mech-184 Bt, Mech-162 Bt and Mech-12 Bt are a failure. These varieties were banned for commercial cultivation in Andhra Pradesh and Mech-12 Bt was banned for cultivation in the entire south of India. [iv]

"The dangers of GE organisms in the food chain and the environment are becoming apparent. All government agencies and commercial interests must take these warnings seriously before it is too late", says Ms Bleakley.

ENDS


References:-

[i] Report of the Preliminary Assessment, Mortality in Sheep Flocks after grazing on Bt Cotton fields – Warangal District, Andhra Pradesh, released April, 2006, http://www.gmwatch.org/archive2.asp?arcid=6494

ISIS Press Release 03/05/06, Mass Deaths in Sheep Grazing on Bt Cotton http://www.i-sis.org.uk/MDSGBTC.php


[ii] Food Standards Notification Circular 2-06 (22 March 2006)
http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/standardsdevelopment/notificationcirculars/index.cfm


[iii] Impact of Bt Cotton on Farmers Health investigation report Oct-Dec 2005


[iv] GEAC nod for new Bt cotton varieties, farmers cry foul, ASHOK B SHARMA,Financial Express, May 2, 2006
http://www.financialexpress.com/fe_full_story.php?content_id=125649

Field trial of GM crops only after GEAC approval, rules apex court, ASHOK B SHARMA, Financial Express, May 02, 2006
http://www.financialexpress.com/fe_full_story.php?content_id=125614

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines

 

Finance: Major Campaign To End "Gross Overtaxation Of Savings"

The campaign – which includes a special web site through which New Zealanders can e-mail their own and other MPs and party leaders – is backed by Age Concern, Consumer NZ, the Financial Services Council and the Taxpayers’ Union. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Leighton-Led WGP To Build, Manage Transmission Gully

The Wellington Gateway Partnership, led by a unit of ASX-listed Leighton Holdings, has won the $1 billion contract to build the Transmission Gully road north of Wellington. More>>

ALSO:

Gareth Morgan: The Government’s Fresh Water Policy – Revisited

Fresh water quality is the latest area to be in the sights of Gareth Morgan and his research organisation The Morgan Foundation... They found that the fresh water policy was a bit murkier than the Environment Minister let on. More>>

ALSO:

Interest Rates: RBNZ Hikes OCR To 3.5%, ‘Period Of Assessment’ Now Needed

Reserve Bank governor Graeme Wheeler raised the official cash rate as expected, while signalling a pause in rate hikes to assess the impact of moves so far this year. The kiwi dollar sank after Wheeler said its strength was “unjustified” and that the currency could have “a significant fall.” More>>

ALSO:

Fonterra: Canpac Site 'Resize' To Focus More On Paediatrics

Fonterra is looking at realigning its packing operations at Canpac, in the Waikato, to focus more on paediatric nutritionals... The proposed changes could mean around 110 roles may not be required at the site which currently employs 330. More>>

ALSO:

Scoop Business: Postie Plus Brand Gets 2nd Chance With Well-Funded Pepkor

The Postie Plus brand is getting a new lease of life after South Africa’s Pepkor bought the failed retailer’s assets out of administration and said it will use its purchasing power to reduce costs of stock and fatten margins. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 
 
Computer Power Plus

Standards New Zealand

Standards New Zealand
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
Sci-Tech
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news