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Date:

August 10, 2000

Subject:

ORG-MARG, Sunshine, Flavr Savr, RR soy

 

Dear Sharad Mistry,

Percentages calculated from social surveys depend not on the size of the
sample, but on the sampling method used. If ORG-MARG followed well-known,
basic rules of probability sampling, then interviewing 1000 farmers in
India was more than sufficient to accurately estimate the percentage of
ALL Indian farmers who favour biotechnology. The 92% figure would have a
small margin of error -- the actual percentage could be slightly higher or
slightly lower. I refer you to the most widely used and sited text book on
social research methods in the world: Babbie, Earl. (1998) The Practice
of Social Research, 8th ed. London, England: International Thomson
Publishing Europe. (Specifically see Chapter 8, entitled ''The Logic of
Sampling''.)

Yours,
Gale West

>Date: Jul 31 2000 06:08:29 EDT
>From: sharadmistry@express2.indexp.co.in
>Subject: Re: 92% OF INDIAN FARMERS INTERVIEWED THINK BIOTECHNOLOGY IS BEN
>
>A miniscule number of Indian farmers - 1000 - were supposed to have been
>intereviewed by the ORG - MARG based on which the report's heading says 92
>per cent of Indian farmers are in favour of biotechnology.
>
>Sharad Mistry

********************************************
Gale West, Professeure Agrégée/Assoc. Prof., Consumer Sciences
Centre de Recherche en Économie Agroalimentaire (CRÉA)
Centre for Research in Economics of Agri-Food (CREA)
Pavillon Paul-Comtois, Universite Laval
Ste-Foy (Quebec) G1K-7P4 CANADA
http://alpha.eru.ulaval.ca/crea/
===================================================================

Date: Aug 10 2000 15:53:05 EDT
From: Andrew Apel
Subject: New Anti-GM Initiative

Colleagues,

It's always good to watch what the activists are up to in their new
campaigns. There's a new tidbit for you below. It will be interesting to
see if the economic interests of the South American and other drug lords,
coupled with an emphasis on racism and xenophobia, will make this new
anti-biotech effort a success.

ACTIVIST GROUP UPDATES AGENDA

August 10, 2000 The Sunshine Project <http://www.sunshine-project.org>, an
anti-biotechnology group originally founded late in 1999 to combat the use
in South America of fungal biocontrols on plants used to produce illicit
drugs, has now updated its agenda.

The Project is staffed by Jan Van Aken, a Greenpeace veteran, Susana
Pimiento, a Colombian lawyer with connections to the World Wildlife Fund
and Edward Hammond, the editor of Crop Choice <http://www.cropchoice.com>,
formerly of Rural Advancement Foundation International (RAFI).

The group's original stance against fungal biocontrols, which it dubbed
"Agent Green," was based on two claims: that effective biocontrols on
drug-producing plants could threaten traditional medicinal and other uses
of these plants in South America, and that the biocontrols could have
unintended effects. Its new agenda embraces a more general stance against
the use of biotechnology to produce enhanced viral and fungal pathogens
for the destruction of commercial crops in general, which could constitute
a form of economic warfare.

The group has also taken a position against the use of human genome data
for the production of genetically modified pathogens which specifically
target racial or ethnic groups.
===================================================================

Subj: RE: Published Literature on Science and testing in GMO risk/safety
assessment
Date: Thu, 10 Aug 2000 6:37:36 PM Eastern Daylight Time
From: "Redenbaugh, Keith"

The Flavr Savr documents were submitted to FDA as part of its safety
assessment data package. The feeding studies were done in 1992-1993. The
documents were never formally published, but are available from FDA under
FOIA. I don't have copies of any of the documnents, but you can look at
the CFSAN web site and see their report on the Flavr Savr tomato. They
should have the docket number, but you should be able to get the feeding
study reports from FDA even if you do not have it. None of the data Calgene
submitted to FDA was confidential. All of it is available to anyone who
requests it. And, if you ask, they will probably waive the copying charges
so it won't cost you anything.

There were three feeding studies done in which rats were gavaged twice a
day with 15 ml of Flavr Savr tomato puree. The first study showed no
affect on the rats. The second study showed pinpoint lesions in the
mucosal layer of the stomach of 4 rats fed Flavr Savr tomato puree, but
not in the controls. The third study showed the same lesions in both Flavr
Savr and control tomato-fed rats. An outside panel of experts were hired
by Calgene to review all the data and provide a report. They re-examined
the data and concluded
that there was no difference in the presence of lesions between Flavr Savr
and control tomato-fed rats. FDA convened its Food Advisory Committee
which examined these data (and all the other data provided by Calgene) and
concluded there were no safety differences between Flavr Savr and control
tomatoes. Because of the lesions, FDA was not able to conclude that
tomatoes, themselves, were safe! But since the lesions were found in both
test and control rats, the FDA did conclude that, "The FLAVR SAVR tomato is
as safe as other tomatoes."

The testing Calgene did was essentially what FDA requires for a new food
additive. In fact, the nptII protein was granted food additive status by
the FDA.

Keith Redenbaugh

-----Original Message-----
From: Marcus Williamson [mailto:marcus@myrealbox.com]
Sent: Thursday, July 27, 2000 1:52 PM
To: Redenbaugh, Keith
Subject: Re: Published Literature on Science and testing in GMO
risk/safety assessment

Keith

Can you provide the title of the report, publication date and authors?

Was this really *safety* testing which was being done on the Flavr Savr
tomato?

regards
Marcus Williamson
================================================================

Subj:: AGBIOVIEW: A Farmer's experience with GM
Date: Fri, 11 Aug 2000 11:50:54 AM Eastern Daylight Time
From: "Barry B. Bean"

On 11 Aug 2000 14:19:19 -0000, AgBioView wrote:

> The work load associated
>with Roundup Ready soybeans is no lighter than the work load of
>"conventional" crops.

This may be true of RR beans, but I can certainly attest to reduced labor
in RR cotton. RR & BXN cotton eliminates several rounds of cultivation and
spraying, and makes no-till, minimum till, and untra
narrow row possible where it wouldn't be otherwise.
-
B.B. Bean bbbean@beancotton.com
Bean & Bean Cotton Co/Bean Farms http://www.beancotton.com
Peach Orchard, MO
================================================================