Genetic engineering (GM)

We believe that genetic engineering has no place in organic agriculture. But we are also dubious about its potential benefits for conventional farming and we do not think that the putative benefits outweigh the clear risks. In short, we do not think that GE crops should be commercialised in the UK.

There are viable alternatives to genetic engineering – some of which we are developing in our research programme. A GE free UK farming and food system, we believe, will be better in terms of markets, boost genuine sustainability and help to re-establish trust between farmers, consumers and citizens.

Interesting articles

GM Foods: The Answer? Or Just Empty Promises?

9 Feb 2009

A review by Jeffry Loho and Prof. Dr. Hartmut Vogtmann

In the year 2050 the world population is expected to reach 9 billion and we would not have enough food anymore if the world food production still goes the way it is going now. GM advocates claim to have the solution for this, manipulate the genes of a crop, increase it’s productivity, and the problem is solved, the world is at peace, case closed. GM also promised other benefits…

Download full article here.

Living wih GM neighbours…

The Government’s industry consultation on how to live alongside GM crops (coexistence is the term) closes on October 20th. The Organic Research Centre has compiled a detailed response calling for far more stringent regulation of any GM crops when grown in the UK alongside organic or conventional non GM farmers and growers.

There has to be an extension of the principle of “polluter pays” in the GM coexistence case, with the full costs of monitoring, surveillance and any consequent damages borne by the GM sector and GM farmers. Read the full ORC consultation here alongside our consultation analysis document Engineering Coexistence, available in pdf format here.

The proper construction of a coexistence regime between organic and GM crops is a crucial building block for the future success of our industry. Have your say and let Defra and the wider Government, alongside the GM industry, know the strength and detail of your arguments

GM debate bubbles below…

19 May 2006

Mass media coverage of genetically engineered crops has cooled since the big public debates of 2003/2004. But the threat to our food supply and environment from contamination has not. ORC’s Dr Bruce Pearce reports from a key EU gathering on GM and GE crops in Vienna…

Download article here.

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