GM challenge

20 Apr, 2017 10:52 AM

FARMERS who grow genetically modified (GM) canola are on notice to avoid spread outside their farm boundary and to be accountable for GM contamination if and when it does occur.

When WA Parliament resumes on May 11, Foodwatch will be presenting a petition to both houses calling for legislation to protect GM-free farming and food.

Roundup Ready GM canola is patented by Monsanto and designed to be sprayed with Monsanto’s trademark glyphosate-based herbicide, Roundup.

Consumers are wary of food that is contaminated by either of them.

We do not want a food system driven by chemical corporations.

It’s as simple as that.

When the Barnett Government passed the WA GM Crops Free Areas Repeal Bill, then Agriculture Minister Mark Lewis said it would give certainty to WA farmers and investors.

But that couldn’t be further from the truth.

GM canola in WA is increasingly controversial as it puts at risk WA’s premium GM-free markets.

The GM industry has shirked responsibility for contamination and increasing glyphosate-resistance problems while the government not only relaxed legislative safeguards and enforcements but partnered with Monsanto in public plant-breeding asset InterGrain.

The fallout from these failures was the Marsh versus Baxter court case over GM contamination.

Kojonup organic farmer Steve Marsh was among 30 witnesses who gave evidence to the Monsanto Tribunal in The Hague, October 14-16, 2016, at the same time as the Barnett government’s repeal of the WA GM Crops Free Areas Act.

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Bob Phelps
20/04/2017 2:38:17 PM, on Farm Weekly

The Minister of Ag can use WA's Gene Technology Act 2006 to manage GM & GM-free crops for market reasons. As >90% of WA conventional & organic farmers are GM-free, GM contamination threatens their premium GM-free European & local markets (worth $40/tonne for GM-free) that have zero tolerance for any GM. Weak Dept of Ag segregation guidelines should be enacted in strong laws & a Farmer Protection Fund set up. The fund would be financed from a levy of $1/kg on all GM seed sold, so farmers who suffer GM contamination & financial loss can apply for automatic compensation, without going to court.


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The Minister of Ag can use WA's Gene Technology Act 2006 to manage GM & GM-free crops for market
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Time will judge if they can implement what growers are asking for. Not what a director
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Absolutely agreed. Chinese demand for high-quality protein is increasing, as is demand from