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


Swiss sail ahead with 'GE-free' vote

Swiss sail ahead with 'GE-free' vote ; NZ farmers urged to follow

As well as leading the world in competitive sailing the Swiss are set to lead the way for GE-Free agriculture after Farmers voted to support a 5 year moratorium on GE agriculture in Switzerland.

The decision by the Swiss Farmers Union to back a referendum for a 5-year moratorium on GE releases shows that both consumers and farmers are becoming increasingly aware of the benefits and opportunities for GE-Free food production.

"We hope New Zealand farmers will take heed of what their colleagues in Europe are doing" says Jon Carapiet from GE Free NZ (in food and environment).

"Even if bodies like Federated Farmers are supportive of GE release, there is growing evidence that it will damage our economy and international marketing image as well as pollute conventional agricultural systems".

GE-Free NZ believe the New Zealand government can and must preserve the opportunities identified by the Royal Commission by keeping applications of Genetic Modification in containment, and only allowing ethical uses. " This will keep our food and environment GE-free while still benefiting from the knowledge of genetics our scientists are developing. We do not need to release GE organisms with antibiotic marker genes and viral promoters.

Even companies like Monsanto are accepting safer GE techniques such as assisted gene marking to help cross-breed the best stock without genetically engineering them," says Mr Carapiet.

The Swiss moratorium is likely to will be put to a vote later this year but a similar vote in new Zealand is not yet on the cards.

" I am not sure the New Zealand government need to bother with a referendum on a 5-year moratorium. It is obvious that a moratorium is needed based on the scientific evidence emerging over the last few years. The Royal Commission showed most people want to protect our GE-Free option. If the government go for commercial GE release they will destroy that option step by step, case by case", says Mr Carapiet.

"What is needed is legislation to prevent GE release and preserve our opportunities. This is what the country will be looking for in the coming months when the Government releases its Biotechnology strategy and when MAF announce how they will manage "Co-existence" to ensure New Zealand's seed, soil, honey and food exports stay clean of GE contamination.

© Scoop Media

Business Headlines | Sci-Tech Headlines


TradeMe: Property Prices In Every Region Hit New High For The Very First Time

Property prices experienced their hottest month on record in December, with record highs in every region, according to the latest Trade Me Property Price Index.\ Trade Me Property spokesperson Logan Mudge said the property market ended the year with ... More>>

Motor Industry Association: 2020 New Vehicle Registrations Suffer From Covid-19

Chief Executive David Crawford says that like some other sectors of the New Zealand economy, the new vehicle sector suffered from a case of Covid-19. Confirmed figures for December 2020 show registrations of 8,383 were 25% ... More>>

CTU 2021 Work Life Survey: COVID And Bullying Hit Workplaces Hard, Huge Support For Increased Sick Leave

New data from the CTU’s annual work life survey shows a snapshot of working people’s experiences and outlook heading out of 2020 and into the new year. Concerningly 42% of respondents cite workplace bullying as an issue in their workplace - a number ... More>>

Smelter: Tiwai Deal Gives Time For Managed Transition

Today’s deal between Meridian and Rio Tinto for the Tiwai smelter to remain open another four years provides time for a managed transition for Southland. “The deal provides welcome certainty to the Southland community by protecting jobs and incomes as the region plans for the future. The Government is committed to working on a managed transition with the local community,” Grant Robertson said. More>>


Real Estate: Auckland’s Rental Market Ends Year Near $600 Per Week Mark

The average weekly rent in Auckland reached a new high of $595 at the end of 2020, just shy of a long-anticipated $600 per week. More>>

University of Auckland: Pest-Free Goal Won’t Be Achieved Without New And Better Tools

New Zealand’s goal to become predator free by 2050 will remain an unrealised dream unless new technologies and advances in social engagement continue to be developed, researchers who first promoted it say. A team from the University of Auckland has ... More>>

OECD: Area Employment Rate Rose By 1.9 Percentage Points In The Third Quarter Of 2020

OECD area employment rate rose by 1.9 percentage points in the third quarter of 2020, but remained 2.5 percentage points below its pre-pandemic level The OECD area [1] employment rate – the share of the working-age population with jobs – rose ... More>>

Economy: Strong Job Ad Performance In Quarter Four

SEEK Quarterly Employment Report data shows a positive q/q performance with a 19% national growth in jobs advertised during Q4 2020, which includes October, November and December. Comparing quarter 4, 2020, with the same quarter in 2019 shows that job ad volumes are 7% lower...More>>