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U$ gives the orders:UK stands up for Gen Manipulated crops



NOTE the following refs. below :  

<Under a new international treaty, a ban on GMOs would only be justifiable
on scientific grounds if it were shown traditional crops or local plants
were likely to be wiped out or damaged by mutant intruders.>

IS THIS A REF TO the prospective treaty mentioned next, or to something
already in force ??

<That is exactly the kind of issue that a new international agreement on
controlling the import and export of live genetic material is to cover. 
The final negotiating session between 170 countries starts in Colombia on
February 14, but there is wide disagreement over what it should contain.>

Cheers
MichaelP
==================================
Guardian (London)Friday February 5, 1999

Britain and the United States have decided to block attempts to ban
genetically modified organisms by India and other developing countries who
want to protect their traditional farming methods and the food supply of
the poor.

Tony Blair and the European Union are backing the US position that a ban
on GM crops on those grounds is a restraint of free trade.

Under a new international treaty, a ban on GMOs would only be justifiable
on scientific grounds if it were shown traditional crops or local plants
were likely to be wiped out or damaged by mutant intruders.

Britain and the US believe their biotechnology companies specialising in
GM products will lose exports if developing countries ban them on social
or economic grounds.

Meanwhile, the Environment Minister, Michael Meacher, disclosed yesterday
that three test sites growing GM food have broken rules on their
development. In a Commons written reply he said a Health and Safety
inspector found breaches of regulations by Nickersons Biochem at
Holton-le-Moor, Lincolnshire, and by the Scottish Crop Research Institute
at two sites in Invergowrie, Dundee. Nickersons Biochem had planted GM
oilseed rape less than the approved 400 metres from non-GM oilseed rape,
while the SCRI had grown field beans instead of barley after testing GM
potatoes.

News of the rule breaches, which took place in 1997, came as Mr Meacher
disclosed in another written reply that GM crops could have greater
potential to affect the environment than non-GM crops.

He told MPs that in one laboratory study in 1998 there was a higher
likelihood that lacewing flies fed on moth caterpillars that had been fed
on GM maize would die.

That is exactly the kind of issue that a new international agreement on
controlling the import and export of live genetic material is to cover.
The final negotiating session between 170 countries starts in Colombia on
February 14, but there is wide disagreement over what it should contain.

India and African states believe that if multinational companies like
Monsanto are allowed to control the seed supply, their traditional
agriculture - in which part of the crop is saved by farmers for sowing the
next year - will be in jeopardy. If Monsanto have patented the seed or
included a terminator gene so crops cannot reproduce, then traditional
agricultural practices on which their economies are based would end.

The row over the right to ban GM organisms which might damage local crops
or traditional agriculture must be resolved before the protocol can be
finalised for signing in New York in three months.



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