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Date:

October 25, 2006

Subject:

Exaggerating the Risks; Mexico's Backward Step; The Smart Choice; India's Supreme Court

 

Today in AgBioView from http://www.agbioworld.org - October 25, 2006

* GM Crops, DDT and Frankenstein foods: Exaggerating the Risks
* Mexico GMO Commercial Corn Seen Years Away
* Mexico's Rejection of Biotech Corn Planting Draws Mixed Reaction
* GM Crops the Smart Choice
* The Only Country in Africa to Commercialize Bt Products
* Monsanto's Transgenic Cross
* India: Supreme Court Says "No" to More Transgenic Crops
* Responding to Critics of Modern Farming for Africa
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GM Crops, DDT and Frankenstein foods: Exaggerating the Risks

- Alfred Smith, Daily Reckoning (UK), Oct, 24 2006 (Via Vivian Moses) http://dailyreckoning.co.uk/article/241020063.html

"...Campaigners against GM crops and foods appear to be making the same mistake exaggerating the risks and ignoring the considerable advantages. Opponents of GM crops and foods are almost completely silent on their advantages and the food industry has been remarkably unsuccessful in explaining that GM crops will lead to many advantages..."

--
Rachel Carson's book Silent Spring, published in 1962, led to the banning of DDT. She claimed that the potent insecticide was killing birds and animals and was dangerous to human health. But the author Michael Crichton has argued that the banning of DDT has led to two million needless deaths a year and that banning DDT has caused more unnecessary deaths than Hitler.

DDT is a long-lasting and highly effective agent against malarial bearing mosquitoes. It is claimed that the alternatives to DDT are more expensive, more damaging to humans and less effective. DDT is banned in most developed countries but is still used in a limited way to prevent malaria in some developing countries. While undoubtedly the excessive use of DDT in agriculture can be harmful, and Michael Crichton's assertion may be overstated, the proponents of a complete ban on the use of DDT worldwide appear to grossly exaggerate the hazards to people in rich countries and underestimate the benefits to people in poor countries.

There is no certain evidence that it has any significant harmful effects on human beings at all. And an article in highly respected scientific journal Nature Medicine commented: "Environmentalists in rich, developed countries gain nothing from DDT, and thus small risks felt at home loom larger than health benefits for the poor tropics."

"Frankenstein foods" baloney
Campaigners against GM crops and foods appear to be making the same mistake - exaggerating the risks and ignoring the considerable advantages. Opponents of GM crops and foods are almost completely silent on their advantages and the food industry has been remarkably unsuccessful in explaining that GM crops will lead to the decreased use of pesticides, more nutritious food and higher crop yields in poor countries amongst other advantages. Advantages that have already been recognised and taken up in the US, Canada and China amongst others.

The genetic modification of plants by selective breeding has been continuous since agriculture began about 10,000 years ago by the process of selective breeding. But genetic modification is a somewhat different process. It involves the insertion of new genes into the plant or animal in question to produce improved varieties. It is, in short, a method of short-circuiting the selective breeding process.

Plant varieties can be genetically modified to make them resistant to certain herbicides which can then be used freely to protect the crop from weeds. Plants can also be modified to make them impervious to damaging insects. Selective breeding might not be able to achieve the same result. It follows that genetic modification has the potentiality to increase yields and to reduce the use of fertilisers and insecticides. An interesting example is genetically modified maize which is resistant to the corn borer insect which can account for a 20% reduction in crop.

Little publicised advantages of GM crops
In fact, one of the great advantages of GM crops is that they can reduce the huge volume of pesticides used which are an established threat to the environment. Opponents of GM crops are curiously silent on the very long-run effects of pesticides. They are usually strong supporters of organic farming which eschews the use of man-made chemical pesticides but has no problem, for example, with the use of Copper Sulphate on apples. A practice of concern to the EU which may seek to ban it. Of course, some opponents would argue for the abandonment of both GM crops and pesticides, but this would take farms back to the productivity of the 19th century.

Another advantage of GM crops is that they can improve the nutritional value of foods. Thus it is possible to create crops with far higher protein content than ordinary varieties. For example, Indian scientists have genetically modified the potato to increase its protein content by adding genes from the amaranth plant. Soya and maize have also been modified to increase their protein content. Similarly, Swiss scientists have developed a "Golden Rice" which has Vitamin A which ordinary rice does not contain. This is important as people in poor countries with predominantly rice diets can suffer Vitamin A deficiency. In children this can lead to blindness and early death.

Another advantage that genetic modification can bring is the removal of harmful toxins. Plants can be so modified that they are resistant to certain fungal moulds that can be damaging to human health. Bananas and other fruits have been modified to contain vaccines that give protection against cholera and hepatitis. Wheat has been modified to make it gluten-free which benefits people with celiac disease. Tomatoes have been modified to include beneficial antioxidants.

Genetic modification has also lead to more direct commercial advantages. In the United States, a genetically modified tomato, "Flavr Savrģ", has been introduced which has a longer shelf life than standard varieties. Slow softening apples and raspberries have also been developed which last longer before decaying than unmodified crops. Another potentially positive development, at a time of high oil prices, is work to adapt plants to make them more amenable to the production of biofuels and to produce biodegradable plastics.

Exaggerating the risks
Of course there are risks and concrete disadvantages in the development of genetically modified crops. But these can be easily exaggerated. Perhaps the most convincing is that genetically modified crops have been grown in the United States for 10 years with none of the dire consequences predicted by the opponents of "Frankenstein foods".

Many objections to GM foods appear almost completely misplaced. Thus the threat from eating food made from GM food and animals is minimal because genetic material is broken down in food preparation and digestion. On the other hand, there is the risk that herbicide resistant GM crops could interbreed with related weed varieties and create a "superweed", that was also resistant to the herbicide in question. But still the risk is small compared to the advantages, and in the future the technology may develop to reduce or eliminate this potential damage. Opponents forget that any advance involves risk. There have even been suggestions that GM crops could be the "new thalidomide". But even that tragedy did not lead to complete banning of medical research, but it did result rightly in much stricter regulation.

Many opponents of GM crops base their arguments on a generalised rejection of modern business methods, science and technology. Theirs is often a sense of unease with the scientific manipulation of nature and the motives of its commercial promoters. For example, Friends of the Earth objects that GM soya seed is too expensive for poor small scale farmers in Brazil and only large agri-businesses can afford them. But this is a bad argument against highly productive large scale agriculture and no argument against GM crops. Friends of the Earth's objection to GM food and crops is part of a wider campaign against supermarkets which it regularly accuses of trying to inveigle GM foods onto their shelves. Again, this is part of an unconvincing campaign against supermarkets which for all their faults have greatly improved the choice, cheapness and availability of food in Britain in recent decades, and no argument against GM foods and crops as such.

Why itís a worry for The Government
The press, including The Independent, the Daily Mail and the Daily Telegraph, are eager to elaborate the risks without describing the potential advantages of .the new technology. Following the publication of the DEFRA white paper in July which set out the Government's plans to permit certain GM crops by 2009, the Daily Telegraph seriously reported on the threat of GM crops to property prices.

Given New Labour's understandable anxiety about the result of the next general election, there must be the danger that it retreats from its policy, based on scientific advice, of permitting the development of GM crops under controlled conditions.

Pandering to Luddite special interest groups with extreme anti-capitalist views for reasons of electoral support could make the development of GM crops in the UK even more difficult. It would be in danger of repeating the error made in banning DDT. Again many people in poor countries could needlessly lose their lives.

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Mexico GMO Commercial Corn Seen Years Away

- Reuters October 25, 2006

Mexico is unlikely to see the commercial production of genetically modified corn for years, even though it will soon let companies plant GMO corn test crops, biotech firm Monsanto (MON.N: Quote, Profile, Research) said on Tuesday.

The agriculture ministry said last week Mexico will establish rules within two weeks allowing biotech companies to grow GMO corn test crops. But the experiments will take time and Mexico would still need rules allowing the commercial production and sale of GMO corn, Monsanto executive Jesus Perez told Reuters.

"In the best case scenario, it will be at least three years before this biotechnology becomes available to the Mexican grower," Perez said.

Mexico, which prides itself as the historical home of corn, is a big consumer of U.S. corn and corn seeds but is a major corn producer. About a million mostly poor farmers plant the crop, often on small plots in remote areas.

****************

Mexico's Rejection of Biotech Corn Planting Draws Mixed Reaction

- Mark Stevenson, WCBS News Radio 880, October 24, 2006 http://www.newsradio88.com/

Mexico City - Mexico barred Monsanto Co. and other biotechnology companies from planting genetically engineered corn, rekindling fierce debate in that country over the technology.

Environmentalists said the government's decision will help prevent biotech corn from contaminating native varieties in Mexico, the birthplace of corn and still a storehouse of genetically valuable native species.

But the decision announced last week by Mexico's Agriculture Department angered some biotech supporters that said it would limit access to plants that could reduce pesticide and herbicide use and have other advantages for local farmers.

Columnist Sergio Sarmiento, writing in the newspaper Reforma on Wednesday, called it "cowardly." Genetically modified corn "is already in use in many parts of the world and it has enormous benefits, both in terms of the environment and production, given that it reduces pesticide use," Sarmiento wrote.

Even environmentalists don't think Monday's decision is the last word. "This is temporary, because there is so much pressure from the multinationals," said Gustavo Ampugnani of Greenpeace Mexico. "They are going to put a lot of pressure on the incoming administration" of president-elect Felipe Calderon, who takes office Dec. 1.

The decision turned down all seven requests filed by companies including Monsanto, Pioneer Hi-Bred International Inc. and others. "We were surprised by this decision," said Eduardo Perez Pico, director of technological development at Monsanto's Mexico subsidiary, which had applied to start experimental fields in the northern states of Sinaloa, Sonora, and Tamaulipas. "These are not centers of origin or biodiversity of corn," Perez Pico said, referring to the areas where corn ancestor plants or primitive varieties grow wild.

Under current law, centers of origin or diversity are off-limits to biotech planting, in part to protect the genetic traits of those ancestor varieties in case their traits are needed for crossbreeding in the future. In areas of Mexico where corn is determined to be a non-native or non-original crop, there is the possibility of a permit being granted for the first phases of experimental projects, said Pedro Mata, of Mexico's food safety agency.

Mata said the ruling hinged on debate over whether any area of Mexican can be designated as a non-origin region for corn. "The researchers and experts are still discussing it, and there are some controversies," Mata said. There is no deadline for drawing up the map of "safe" areas.

Mexico imposed a moratorium on the planting of genetically modified crops in 1998, but in 2005, President Vicente Fox signed a bill that set out a framework for approving GM planting in the future.

Farmers in Mexico first bred corn some 6,000 to 8,000 years ago. The country is home to at least 59 species of maize, from the protein-rich variety used to make tortilla chips to a softer grain mashed for use in tamales.

A study in the Sierra de Juarez region in the southern state of Oaxaca found evidence of transgenic corn contamination in 2000 from corn that was apparently imported for food use. The study was published and then retracted by the science journal Nature.

Another study by Mexican and U.S. researchers in 2004 found no trace of genetically altered corn in crops in the same area four years later.

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GM Crops the Smart Choice

- Weekly Times (Australia), October 25, 2006

Peter Hill may not want GM food, but the world needs GM food (WT, October 11).

We have to learn to farm smarter if we are to feed a growing world population from the same amount of arable land and with no more water. GM crops have the potential to yield as much -- with less water in some cases -- using up to 80 per cent less chemicals and offering protection from frost.

This is something that Goulburn Valley fruit growers would be keen to explore. Indeed, GM food crops have the potential to reduce the ecological footprint of food production while increasing yields.

For these reasons, the Australian Environment Foundation supports the controlled introduction of GM crops to all states.

- Max Rheese, executive director, Australian Environment Foundation, Benalla

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South Africa is the Only Country in Africa to Commercialize Bt Products

- Rolly Dureha, BioSpectrum (India), October 18, 2006

http://www.biospectrumindia.com/

The Program for Biosafety Systems (PBS) is supported by the United States Agency for International Development (USAID) to assist developing countries to enhance biosafety policy, research, and capacity. The PBS is run by a consortium of professionals and institutions with a high level of knowledge in biosafety program and policy development in developing countries.

In a chat with BioSpectrum, Dr Idah Sithole-Niang elaborates on the strides made by the South African region in the biotech arena.

* What is the status of modern biotechnology in South Africa? How successful are the modern biotech crops?
- In South Africa, GM research started in 1982, and over 500 field trials have been conducted so far. Till date the country has commercialized five GM products-Bt cotton, Bt maize, Bt yellow and white maize, herbicide tolerant round up ready soyabean, and the latest in the series is round up ready bollgard. The round up ready bollgard, which has the stacked genes for resistance in cotton, was approved last year. All these products have been developed by large multinational companies in the US and now there are hybrid varieties with these traits locally available in the South African market. The country has developed biotechnology research innovation centers and research platforms, which are new efforts to coordinate biosafety to support biotech R&D.

* What are the issues and challenges facing the spread of biotechnology in the African region?

- Some of the important concerns in the region include:
* South Africa is the only country out of 53 countries in Africa to commercialize Bt products. Egypt has had four products ready since 2002, but there is perceived market pressure which persists.
* Time taken for commercialization is long and costs are high due to biosafety regulatory requirements.
* In the South African region, there is ambivalence towards genetically modified products, while the food security is still threatened.
* There is a need for creating awareness about biotechnology to the public, policy and decision-makers.
* There is a need for building national strategies, fostering sub-regional cooperation and public-private sector partnerships. In addition, there is a requirement for developing policies to guide and create an enabling environment for regulatory, institutional, legal and technology transfer issues.
* Capacity building and infrastructure; brain-drain, mobility and gain; limited funding and GM research on orphan crops are some of the other important challenges.

* From a policy perspective, how are the countries equipped to handle modern biotechnology in the African region?
- Of the 41 African countries, 29 have signed the Cartagena Protocol, while 24 have ratified it. The current status of biotechnology legislation in the region is as follows: In Namibia there is a biotechnology policy and they are finalizing their National Biosafety Framework. Along with Namibia, Cameroon, Kenya and Uganda are in the implementation phase as part of a group of eight countries worldwide. Zambia has a biotech strategy and it is now looking at a legal framework to implement. Zimbabwe and South Africa already have laws and are implementing them. Simultaneously both these countries are reviewing the existing biosafety frameworks.

Malawi and Mauritius have the required legislation, although Malawi is now reviewing the Biosafety Act and developing a Biotech Policy. Lesotho is finalizing the draft policy and bill; the bill at Swaziland is in development; Moza through GIIBS are finalizing their draft bill. Tanzania has a draft interim biosafety framework. It is now finalizing its draft and getting ready for Bt cotton trials. Botswana has a Draft Biosafety Bill, which it is fine tuning and the case of Mozambique is also similar.

* How is your organization facilitating the Program for Biosafety Systems (PBS)?
- The Program for Biosafety Systems (PBS) is global. It is a consortium of biosafety experts and in Asia we work in Indonesia and the Philippines, while in Africa we work in three regions-West Africa, East Africa and the Southern Africa. In Southern Africa, the PBS is in Malawi assisting in fine-tuning their regulations and the policy development. We are at present assisting conduct of confined field trials for transgenic cassava resistant to African cassava mosaic virus. This component within PBS is run out of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI) in Washington and is funded by the USAID.

The PBS has other components like the BBI-Biotechnology Biodiversity Interface, which is a competitive grant program that will run every year in the whole of Africa, Indonesia and the Philippines for risk assessment research. Concurrent to that, there is a component on biosafety/food safety training in which the Michigan State University, US is assisting. The university helps in training both in Asia and Africa. There is another component on the regulatory approval strategies.

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Monsanto's Transgenic Cross

- N. Suresh (Editor), BioSpectrum (India) Oct. 20, 2006 http://www.biospectrumindia.com

India's Supreme Court has put a temporary halt to the march of transgenic crops in the country. In an interim order while hearing a public interest litigation(PIL) in late September, the Court has asked the regulator to put on hold all future approvals of genetically modified (GM) products till it gives a final order.

The saving grace, however, has been that the Court has asked the regulator to continue the ongoing field trials of various GM products approved earlier. The strong anti-GM organizations which had filed the PIL are ecstatic that they got at least a partial victory. The BioAgri companies are disappointed but also happy that all existing approvals will stay till the final orders. The Court order has come as a surprise. Because in recent months India's top policy makers, including the Prime Minister, Minister for Agriculture, Minister for Science & Technology, have come out in full support of using more biotech in agriculture. And they have all highlighted the long list of GM products under development in private and public institutions in the country.

Yet, a few committed anti-GM activists like Suman Sahai, Devinder Sharma, Vandana Shiva and Aruna Rodriguez and of course, Greenpeace, have dictated the agenda of the public discourse on GM products. Why has this happened? The BioAgri industry is yet to gather its wits on this issue and speak out collectively on this issue, even a week after the order. Barring a few agricultural scientists, the community of agriculture researchers have yet to come out in the public with their impartial views. Monsanto, whose subsidiary, Mahyco-Monsanto which is the principal player in the country's Bt cotton market too has not covered itself with glory. There is a strong feeling within the industry that Monsanto has preferred to let others bat for GM products and not come out fully to engage the public and opinion making sections of the Indian society. Monsanto has so far relied on the technological superiority of its products and refrained from carrying the various stakeholders of the industry with it.

According to BioSpectrum estimates, Monsanto may have earned about Rs 800 crore (~$180M) in technology license fee from its Bt cotton seeds since its commercial introduction in March 2002 to September 2006. However, when anti-GM activists claim that Monsanto has earned over Rs 4,000 crore (~$890M) from technology fee, which is just one-fifth of the actual amount, these allegations strike a chord in the public and remains unchallenged.

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India: Supreme Court Says "No" to More Transgenic Crops

- Srinivas Rao, BioSpectrum (India) Oct. 18, 2006 http://www.biospectrumindia.com

The Supreme Court of India (SCI) on September 22, 2006) directed the Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) not to give approvals to genetically modified products until further orders. "This has perplexed the biotech community but exhilarated the anti-biotech lobby, which seems to read too much in this two-week restriction," said Prof. C Kameswara Rao, executive secretary, Foundation for Biotechnology Awareness and Education, Bangalore.

The Supreme Court's directive was in consideration of a Public Interest Writ Petition (PIL) filed on May 1, 2006 in the matter of Aruna Rodrigues and Others regarding the Biosafety of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs), which are allowed to be released into the environment. The petition sought for issue of directions to stop all field trials for all genetically modified products anywhere and everywhere with immediate effect, besides certain other considerations.

The Supreme Court's interim order stated that "we are not inclined to direct stoppage of all field trials at this stage without (considering) the stand of the respondents. At the same time, we deem it appropriate to direct GEAC to withhold the approvals till further directions are issued on hearing all the concerned". The next hearing on the Writ petition has been fixed for October 13, 2006.

The Supreme Court's order would not apply to field trials of GM products, which were already approved by the GEAC. The Supreme Court also stated that the Government would also consider associating independent experts in GEAC. "The petitioners may give their suggestions to the learned counsel for the respondents in this regard within a period of one week from September 22."

"The advice of the Court to the Government to 'consider associating independent experts in the field with the GEAC' is not an issue with the GEAC, as they had earlier involved other outside experts. The anti-tech activists too were given an opportunity to present their point of view before the GEAC," said Prof. Kameswara Rao. The next hearing of the Supreme Court is on October 13.

The PIL and the key concerns

The writ petition was filed in public interest by Aruna Rodrigues, an economist and marketing management consultant; Dr Devinder Sharma, a trained agricultural scientist and writer; PV Sateesh, cofounder and general secretary of the Deccan Development Society; and Rajeev Baruah, a management specialist and managing director, Maikaal bioRe.

The petitioners pleaded for a stay against grant of fresh approvals and of all field trials on genetically modified crops, as they were concerned with the absence of proper scientific examination of Biosafety aspects.

Dr Devinder Sharma, one of the petitioners, told BioSpectrum, "We are seeking a moratorium on GM crops as their biosafety aspects and their implications are not clear. The GEAC is just a rubber stamp for the industry. It kept on approving the Bt cotton varieties, while the cotton farmers were committing suicides. The past four GEAC heads should be held accountable for the current cotton crisis. How could they approve new Bt cotton varieties, while the cotton farmers were dying? Now that all claims of the Bt cotton seed suppliers have turned wrong why are they not being put behind bars? This is after all not a collateral damage but loss of human life which is a crime. Hence we have requested the Supreme Court to put clamp on the GEAC till there is clarity on the issue."

"Currently, we are facing a terrible agricultural crisis. While at one end the farmers are committing suicides, on the other, the corporates are pushing the Bt technology. During the cotton crop season, from 2002 to 2005, Monsanto had earned a royalty (technology fee) of Rs 1,400 crore. And in 2006, their earnings are to the tune of Rs 4,000 crore. How can they justify such earnings when the farmers are continuously incurring losses? On its part, GEAC sat on all the crop failure results and kept on pushing newer varieties for approval. Until we are clear about the technology, it should not be pushed especially at the cost of the farmers' lives," added Sharma.

The charges made by Dr Sharma are very strong. But according to the ISAAA spokesperson in India, under the Environment Protection Act there are bodies which have been assigned different functions involved in the GM crop trials. "All the activities and the bodies responsible for them are clearly defined. For example, the Institutional Biosafety Committee (IBSC) looks into whether the project has been properly established, etc; the Review Committee on Genetic Manipulation (RCGM) monitors the safety related aspects of the projects, while the Genetic Engineering Approval Committee (GEAC) looks into the environmental safety aspect and is responsible for the approval of proposals relating to the release of genetically modified crops. Since the past three-four months, all the large scale trials have been approved by the GEAC with the inputs of the RCGM as per the directive of the Supreme Court."

"The fact is that there is a well-appreciated and robust multi-step mechanism for biosecurity evaluation of genetically engineered (GE) crops in the country," informed Prof. Kameswara Rao.

Dr KC Bansal, Principal Scientist, National Research Centre on Plant Biotechnology, IARI, added, "All the crop varieties are released after extensive scientific testing and validation. We have an extremely rigorous biosafety mechanism in the nation, which we follow for every crop that is made available to the farmers."

Another concern that the Petitioners have raised in their writ petition is that the "use of technology of genetic engineering and release of GM organisms into the environment would require application of precautionary principle, which mandated that every possible precaution must be taken to ensure that no harmful effects are caused to human and animal health and environment due to the use of new and unknown technologies and organisms".

Prof. Kameswara Rao believes this is overstretching the import of the Precautionary Principle, which advises only a cautious approach, and was not intended to block deployment of GE products altogether on objections not supported by science. "Precautionary Principle was also not meant to be invoked ad infinitum and ad nauseam," said Rao.

Further, the Petitioners state that GE, if allowed to proceed unchecked, would irrevocably change the molecular structure of the world's food supply and impact the biodiversity through unrecallable, self replicating organisms. The reason for this according to the petitioners is that "scientists do not understand the mechanisms of GE-induced changes in gene expression in sufficient detail and they do not know what to look for and these things are termed 'unintended effects'. And one of the most insidious 'unintended' effects of GE is Horizontal Gene Transfer (HGT) and this concern makes the technology of GE highly unpredictable and also extremely dangerous and puts in doubt the safety of GE process itself."

This is a highly imaginative and misleading assumption to paint a scary scenario, which does not make any scientific sense, says Prof. Kameswara Rao. "The GEAC is composed of competent experienced agricultural scientists and other experts who know their responsibility and they have been doing their job as per the rule of law. What might have disturbed the anti-agribiotech lobby in India is that the present GEAC is more pro-active and does not dilly-dally, like its predecessor," added Prof. Rao.

The petition also has other charges that GM companies are sabotaging regulatory regimes of third world countries, including bribing of government officials to get clearances; that the Indian farmers and consumers do not have the choice to better farming prospects and livelihood; that open field trials of Bt Okra, Bt Brinjal and Bt Rice are being conducted in various parts of the country on the basis of the safety tests conducted by the companies and without any independent verification of their safety claims about GM seeds.

Several people in the industry argue that the farmers chose what was best for them and discarded thousands of varieties of crops that were in cultivation at the given time. The farmer will continue to exercise a similar choice and if there were no demand for GE varieties, the market forces will push them out. "Further the Indian public sector institutions have developed about 39 GE traits in 23 crops, much more than the private companies," said Rao. Throughout the world, the product developers provide the basic biosecurity data based on existing governmental guidelines. They are verified and supplemented by public institutions and/or accredited private establishments. In India there are no independent private institutions to conduct biosecurity evaluations. The Department of Biotechnology (DBT), Government of India, is now in the process of putting such a mechanism in place. Currently, the independent public sector research institutions of the Indian Council of Agricultural Research (ICAR) conduct biosecurity evaluations.

While everyone will eagerly wait for the Supreme Court's decision, no one in the industry is denying the concerns of biosafety, but they believe that GM technology should not be rooted out. The evaluation should be on the basis of scientific evidence.

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Responding to Critics of Modern Farming for Africa

Africa Starving......And the EU does not want us to give genetically modified food to Africa. Is genetically modified food bad? Not according to Penn and Teller

http://www.grouchyoldcripple.com/archives/003709.html

(Note: Profanity. Not Safe at Work or with Family)

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