In a recent press statement The (UK) National Beef Association called for all resistance to GM crops, at both UK and EU level, to be abandoned immediately. This is a very short sighted view on agriculture and GM crops and one which is clearly ill informed.
GM lobbyists have been promising the miracles of GM technology for over 2 decades. To date they have seriously failed to deliver on all of their promises. Billions of euros have been invested, and still this technology is rejected by people, farmers, and policy makers all over the world.
International trials of GM cultivation have shown that:
â€¢ Yields have not increased as promised.
â€¢ Reliance on pesticides, herbicides, and fertilisers has increased – not decreased as promised.
â€¢ Weeds and pests have developed resistance to GM crops and pesticides resulting in â€˜superweedsâ€™ and â€˜superbugsâ€™ that need even larger amounts of herbicides and pesticides.
â€¢ There have been problems with cross contamination and cross fertilisation between GM and non-GM crops. These have led to sometimes lengthy law suits and are a potentially explosive problem if more GM crops are planted.
â€¢ This technology is expensive and costly for farmers and makes them more dependent on the agribusiness giants in order to sustain a livelihood.
â€¢ There are proven health risks associated with GM technology. In 1998 Scottish scientists found damage to every single internal organ in rats fed blight resistant GM potatoes. There are many more such examples illustrating very serious concerns with GM food.
â€¢ GM technology has not reduced levels of world hunger as promised. In fact, it has made poor farmers more indebted and less self sufficient and consequently more food insecure than ever before.
The most convincing argument of all is that consumers throughout Europe have consistently voted against growing GM crops. The persistent consumer view combined with the failure of the GM industry to deliver on its promises are the only consistent features of the GM crop saga to date.
It is true that the era of cheap food is over â€“ on account of rising production and fuel costs. However, this also shows that we should be moving away from oil based food production such as GM and embracing sustainable methods like organic farming – based on renewable energy and carbon reduction.
IOA Press Release issued by Grace Maher, Development Officer firstname.lastname@example.org Tel 087 6125989