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2-Plants: GE potatoes with frog genes uprooted in NZ



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Wild Greens Attack Genetically Engineered Potatoes
Thursday, 11 March 1999
Staff Reporter: Greg Meylan 	
(Combining the resources of Radio New Zealand News)

A group of environmental activists calling themselves the "Wild Greens" 
have uprooted a crop of genetically engineered potatoes being field 
tested in Canterbury, New Zealand. The potatoes have been genetically 
engineered to contain the genes of the African clawed toad in order to 
give them resistance to the soft rot bacteria. The potatoes were being 
field tested by Crop and Food who say their trial has been set back a 
year by the attack. The Wild Greens say they fear eating such a potato 
could lessen the effectiveness of antibiotics. Green party co-leader 
Jeanette Fitzsimons says the Wild Greens are party members who belong to 
its radical youth wing and that she understands the sense of frustration 
that has led them to break the law but that she does not condone such 
action. The Wild Greens raided the Crop and Food site last night, pulling 
up the potatoes and damaging some equipment. Chief Executive for Crop and 
Food, Dr Michael Dunbier, says the trial is part of a ten year research 
programme to assess the safety of genetically engineered potatoes for 
commercial use. The institute, has asked police to investigate the 
attack. 


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