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IFOAM EU on Commission proposals on GMO cultivation bans

by Redaktion (comments: 0)

The Commission has just published a proposal that gives member states more possibilities to ban GMO cultivation on their territory – but clearly this is an attempt of the Barroso Commission to persuade member states to facilitate and accept GMO authorisations, according to IFOAM EU. “Whereas some work has been done to improve the texts in the last weeks, these proposals are no adequate response to the contamination problems the European food sector is already facing today,” comments Christopher Stopes, President of the IFOAM EU Group. “On the contrary, with this proposal Commission President Barroso wants to satisfy critical Member States and aims to further accelerate GMO approvals. If this strategy were to succeed, the GMO free food sector would have to struggle even more with GMO contamination problems.”
“Especially in Spain, many farmers had to give up growing maize as they could not deliver the GMO free quality anymore,” adds Victor Gonzalvez, Spanish Board Member of the IFOAM EU Group. “Huge economic damage has been reported throughout the food chain related to GMO contamination, but also related to the prevention of contamination, which still has to be paid by those who want to remain GMO-free. The present proposal enables voluntary measures in some Member States only, but does not provide a solution for the GMO free food sector throughout the EU. Europe-wide, legally binding rules that effectively prevent contamination, and the implementation of ‘the polluter pays’ principle for GMOs must be established to relieve the organic and conventional GMO-free sector of this economic burden.”
“President Barroso has always shown himself to be in favour of faster GMO approvals - despite the fact that the majority of EU citizens reject GMOs on their plates and on their farms, so they clearly reject GMO releases into the environment”, criticises John Portelli, Maltese Board Member of the IFOAM EU Group. “With these proposals, the Commissioner in charge, Mr. Dalli, serves Barroso’s wish to ‘break the deadlock’ over GMOs. We are in favour of strengthening the right of Member States to stay GMO free– but not at the expense of more GMO approvals and not with complete disregard of cross-border contamination problems. Member States must take their citizens seriously and must finally insist to base all EU decisions regarding GMOs on precaution, prevention of contamination and care for health and environment.”




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