GENET archive


3-Food: First independent baby food tests in Russia: TNCs vs. NGOs

                                  PART I
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SOURCE: All-National Association on Genetic Safety, Russia
DATE:   5 Jul 2004

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Russian NGOs demand from TNC to prove that they do not poison Russian babies.

In the beginning of June, All-National Association on Genetic Safety
conducted quantification analysis of baby food. It was done by the
Russian lab Biokom in Moscow.

The results were the following:
"Frisosoy" soy protein for baby food (Friesland Nutrition, Netherlands) 502%
"Beby" soy and rice mix cereal (Kolinska, Slovenia) 100+5%
"Nestogen" dry milk mix (Nestle, Switzerland) 502%
"Alfare" nutritious dry mix (Nestle, Netherlands) 1005%
"Tip-top", vegetable mix puree, (Nutricia, Poland-Netherlands) 20+1%
Puree "Vegetables with beef"(Nestle, Finland) 5+0,2%
Puree "Maize with potato" (Semper, Sweden) 1005%
"Tutteli" dry milk mix (Valio, Finland) 1005%
"Lamb" puree (Gerber, USA) 50+2%
"Beby" chocolate and hazel-nut cereal (Kolinska, Slovenia) 100+5%

When this information was publicized (June 3) all mentioned companies
with exception of Valio and Nutricia held a press conference (June 17)
where they claimed that never used GMOs in Russia. They also promised to
bring a case against Association. And Nestle said that such case has been
already brought, but we still did not see any confirmation from the court.

International Socio-Ecological Union based in Moscow started a public
campaign asking companies to submit an official confirmation (stamped
documents) saying that their babyhood does not contain GMOs, or contains
less than 0,9 % as it required by Russian legislation. Gerber, Semper and
Kolinska sent papers to ISEU signed by the Russian Institute of Nutrition
(dated by June 18 and later) and Sanitary Control (dated by June 11).
NGOs failed to receive any confirmation that these companies ever tested
their products before the scandal (only Semper published on its site a
document dated by the year 2002, when there was 5 % threshold).NGOs have
many reasons not to trust to these state institutions, because everybody
in Russia knows that Dr.Tutelian, director of the Institute of Nutrition
is a pro-GM lobbyist as well as people in the federal Sanitary Control.
Now we want to clarify the situation and to test these products in an
independent western lab. And if GM-content is found (and it is very
likely to be so) we will start an anti-double standard international
campaign. We can not see the difference between Russian and EC babies and
we claim a moratorium on using GMOs in baby food.

Dear colleagues!
If you have any background on these companies we would greatly appreciate it!

Victoria Kolesnikova, secretary of the CIS (former USSR) Biosafety Alliance

The alliance secretariat is based in Moscow:
tel. +7-910-308-89-33
(Russian language biosafety portal)

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

TITLE:  Nestle Sues Genetic Food Agency
SOURCE: MosNews, Russia
DATE:   18 Jun 2004

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Nestle Sues Genetic Food Agency

Switzerland's Nestle, one of the world's top food producers, has filed a
libel lawsuit with Moscow's Arbitration Court against the All-National
Association for Genetic Safety, after the agency accused the company of
using anywhere from 50 percent to 100 percent of genetically modified
ingredients in its baby food, Interfax reported. Nestle was among the
leading baby food producers accused of using modified food without an
appropriate label on the packaging. A Nestle press release quoted by the
news agency said that the company does business in Russia in full
accordance with Russian law, and meets European standards for food safety
as well. The press release denied using genetically modified products in
its baby foods. It said that its baby food has been tested by a number of
"competent sanitation laboratories" in Russia and no traces of
genetically modified products were found. Nestle, which has operated in
Russia since 1995, is one of the biggest producers of chocolate and ice-
cream, as well as other food products, in the country. Its investment in
the nation's food industry has topped $200 million. This is not the first
time the company has come under fire, however. Its ice cream plant in the
Moscow region, Nestle Zhukovskoye, was temporarily closed on June 14
after 24 employees came down with dysentery after eating there.


European NGO Network on Genetic Engineering

Hartmut MEYER (Mr)
Kleine Wiese 6
D - 38116 Braunschweig

P: +49-531-5168746
F: +49-531-5168747
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