GENTECH archive 8.96-97


Australia/Gene foods

	  Genetically changed food to face stringent standard

AAP  03.02.97 05:45   

Copyright 1997 The Australian Associated Press.  Redistribution unauthorised.
   CANBERRA, Feb 3 AAP - Food derived from genetic manipulation  technology
would be banned from sale until health and safety  requirements were satisfied
under a new draft food standard  released for discussion today.
   Senator Bob Woods, Parliamentary Secretary for Health, said the  standard
regulating genetically modified food was an important step  towards ensuring
public health and safety, support for industry and  appropriate harnessing of a
important new technology.
   He said the draft standard had been prepared by the Australia  New Zealand
Food Authority (ASNZFA) which was now seeking views  from the public.
   "The integrity of Australia's food system hinges on an  appropriate level of
regulation which safeguards public health and  consumer confidence while not
burdening industry," Senator Woods  said in a statement.
   "The importance of gene technology to Australia is immense. We  are in a
position to benefit through improved production, greater  industry efficiency
and maximising our home grown technological  expertise in the world market.
   "Tough guidelines guarding public safety and confidence will  strengthen our
system and underscore the integrity of Australia's  food industry."
   Senator Woods said public comment and submissions would be  received to the
end of April and would be taken into account before  the ANZFPA board considere
a final standard.