Greenpeace Disappointed by OECD GE Food Conference
Edinburgh, March 1, 2000 --- Greenpeace today expressed its disappointment by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD) food safety conference and the draft report produced by the organisers. The conference closed today in Edinburgh, the UK.
“The organisers failed to recognise the fact that majority of citizens refused genetically modified organisms in their food and in agriculture,” said Benedikt Haerlin of Greenpeace. “Instead the organisers pretend that the question how to ‘introduce GE food’ was the only problem at stake, ignoring the fundamental ethical and value based questions.”
There is no scientifically valid concept available of risk assessment both of environmental and health effects of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). This is one the reasons Greenpeace fundamentally opposes the release of GMOs into the environment and their subsequent use in food and animal fodder.
”The OECD is engaged in a futile attempt in trying to generate a consensus that does not exist,” said Haerlin. “The draft report duplicates the faults of the conference itself in narrowly focusing on genetic engineering technology and not on the environmental, social, ethical and political issues from which it cannot be separated.”
Greenpeace is concerned about the abuse of the very real and massive problems of the developing countries’ agriculture and future problems of world food supply for the promotion of a technology with unsubstantiated promises.
According to Greenpeace the OECD conference put GE technology in the central of the debate rather than looking at the problems and the alternative mechanisms of solving them. Greenpeace hopes that the final report recognises that there was no consensus about risk assessment as the most important assessment tool, that there are ”clear benefits” to developing countries and that there is no question about the use of GMOs in agriculture.
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