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6-Regulation: New Zealand is going to lift moratorium in October



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TITLE:  NZ Gives GM the Go-ahead
SOURCE: Weekly Times, New Zealand
DATE:   Apr 23, 2003

------------------ archive: http://www.gene.ch/genet.html ------------------


NZ Gives GM the Go-ahead

THE New Zealand government will lift a moratorium on the release of
genetically modified crops in October, claiming they could coexist with
conventionally-grown plants.

Agriculture Minister Jim Sutton said cabinet papers confirmed it would be
safe to lift the moratorium, with a "robust regulatory system" to ensure that
only GM foods deemed safe would be grown or sold. However, New Zealand's
growing organic foods industry has opposed the introduction of GM crops, saying
cross-contamination was inevitable.

The Green Party, which bitterly opposes genetic modification of foods and
other organisms, said New Zealanders would be forced to accept a level of GM
contamination of all crops. "It is an abuse of human and consumer rights to
expect consumers and organic and conventional farmers and growers to accept GM
contamination," said Green Party co-leader Jeanette Fitzsimons.

Environment Minister Marian Hobbs released another report by a group of
economists showing that the introduction of GM organisms would have a limited
impact on the economy, with only a small increase in gross domestic product over
10 years, compared to a small decrease if they were banned.



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