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2-Plants: Brazil environment agency may halt imported GM corn



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                                  PART I
-------------------------------- GENET-news --------------------------------

TITLE:  Brazil environment agency may halt imported GM corn
SOURCE: Reuters
DATE:   Apr 28, 2003

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


Brazil environment agency may halt imported GM corn

SAO PAULO, Brazil - Brazil's environmental protection agency, Ibama, said
last week it was seeking to halt the release of 17,800 tonnes of
genetically modified Argentine corn from the port of Recife earmarked for
chicken farmers in the northeast.

Brazil bans the commercial planting or sale of GM corn but has in past
years under extreme shortages of feed corn for the country's thriving hog
and poultry industry temporarily lifted the ban to allow imports from
Argentina or North America, both of which widely plant transgenic corn.

"We are waiting for a fax from Brasilia that would establish an embargo
on the shipment," said Ibama technician Alberto Jose Rodrigues dos Santos
in Pernambuco state.

"At the moment we know that the transgenic corn has been totally unloaded
and is being stored in granaries at the port (of Recife)," he added.

A consortium of chicken farmers in Pernambuco obtained a preliminary
injunction from the regional courts to suspend the ban of GM corn import
after they were unable to find adequate supplies on the internal market.

Brazil has had trouble in recent years meeting domestic demand as
irregular rains in the main corn belt often pare down production, the
attractiveness of soy planting prompts farmers to convert their corn
fields and the international premium paid for GM-free corn siphons local
supply abroad.

Although the local judge had given the green light to unload the
transgenic Argentine corn, Ibama said it had not been notified as it
should have been.

Director Flavio Montiel at Ibama said the agency would seek a halt on the
release of the corn from the port granaries.

"Any action linked to transgenics in the country should by communicated
to Ibama," said Montiel.


                                  PART II
-------------------------------- GENET-news --------------------------------

TITLE:  Brazil seals port silos holding GM Argentine corn
SOURCE: Reuters
DATE:   Apr 28, 2003

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


Brazil seals port silos holding GM Argentine corn

SAO PAULO, Brazil - Brazil's environmental protection agency, Ibama, said
last week 17,800 tonnes of genetically modified Argentine corn would be
sealed in silos at the Port of Recife until its use and transportation
were clearly defined.

"We were at the port yesterday and we notified those responsible about
the ban on liberating the shipment (of corn)," said Alberto Jose
Rodrigues dos Santos, an inspector at Ibama's offices in Recife.

A consortium of chicken farmers in Pernambuco obtained a preliminary
injunction from regional courts to suspend the ban of GM corn imports
after they were unable to find adequate supplies on the internal market.

Brazil bans the commercial planting or sale of GM corn but has in past
years under extreme shortages of feed corn for the country's thriving hog
and poultry industry temporarily lifted the ban to allow imports form
Argentina or North America, both of which widely plant transgenic corn.

The GM corn was unloaded earlier this week in Recife.

Santos said Ibama would require the poultry producers to submit a
detailed account of how the corn would be transported and consumed in
order to guarantee that none of the GM grains contaminated the local
conventional corn crops.

Brazil has had trouble in recent years meeting domestic demand as
irregular rains in the main corn belt often pare down production, the
attractiveness of soy planting prompts farmers to convert their corn
fields and the international premium paid for GM-free corn siphons local
supply abroad.