Zespri concedes industry leadership
The kiwifruit industry marketing organisation, Zespri, conceded at the Royal Commission on Genetic Modification today that it would not use new GM kiwifruit being developed by HortResearch even if it meant competitors gaining an advantage in world kiwifruit markets.
Zespri witnesses were cross-examined by the NZ Life Sciences Network.
The company conceded its anti-GM policy would apply to all other New Zealand industries and that the dairy industry and others would not be able to develop GM products to stay ahead of international developments if the Government accepted Zespri’s submissions.
The company said New Zealand had to be totally GM free to protect kiwifruit exports.
Zespri also acknowledged it was looking to obtain kiwifruit from northern hemisphere countries like Italy to sell under the Zespri brand but could not answer questions about the impact on their brand if Italy grew GM crops other than kiwifruit.
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Dr William Rolleston Francis Wevers
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