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UN Reject Monsanto's Engineered Milk

30 August 1999

UN Decision A Timely Warning For NZ Dairy Board

The decision by the United Nations Food Safety Agency to reject genetically engineered hormonal milk has been has been welcomed by Green Party Agriculture spokesperson Ian Ewan-Street.

The decision was unanimously made by the agency to support a moratorium on Monsanto's recombinant bovine growth hormone (rBGH) in milk.

This hormone causes cows to live shorter lives, suffer from lameness and sores which do not heal and causes pus in the milk.

Ian Ewan-Street said the move is a very powerful blow against US global trade policies. "It is also the first large scale defeat for genetic engineered foods on unarguable scientific grounds," he said.

"This decision is a very timely and very strong warning to the NZ Dairy Board which plans to spend $150 million on research into genetically engineered milk," he said.

"International public opinion has been emphatically against genetically engineered foods of all kinds and all the signals are that exports of our dairy products - a national icon -could be seriously threatened if New Zealand became identified as a GE producing country.

"On the other hand, demand for organic produce is increasing exponentially and products are attracting a high premium, simply because they are guaranteed to free of pollutants such as chemical additives, growth hormones, antibiotics and genetically engineered ingredients," he said.

The Dairy Board would do well to consider spending its research dollars on organic products, rather than chasing elusive returns in a technology which is collapsing on scientific, marketing and financial grounds," said Ian Ewan-Street.

ENDS

Contact Ian Ewan-Street 03 577 7593


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