GCA Slams GM Canola Hysteria

SYDNEY - Jul 18/05 - SNS -- Negative reaction to the discovery of 0.01% genetically modified (GM) canola in an export consignment is unjustified hysteria in the view of Grains Council of Australia (GCA) President Murray Jones.

"There is no potential at all for this detection to impact on our export sales. At 0.01%, the presence of GM canola is at the very edge of what can be measured. This is really a trace amount and we have full confidence in the processes being put in place to investigate the source of the canola that has been detected."

"Calls for more regulation are political grand standing, as there is no proof anywhere in the world that this technology is harmful or risky to health or the environment. Demands by activists for admission of liability and a recall of the product by Bayer Cropscience are ludicrous. The superseded Topas 19/2 product was last grown in a trial in Australia in 1998 and has not been grown in trials in Australia since", he said.

"There is no justification for additional regulation of agri-biotechnology. What we should be doing is reducing the regulation and boosting the research. The Australian grains industry spends $6 million per year on biotechnology research and taxpayers spend about $8 million a year on regulation.