food

New EU policy welcomes untested GMOs into food chain despite widespread rejection by farmers

Wednesday, April 06, 2011 by: Ethan A. Huff, staff writer
Tags: GMOs, food chain, health news

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(NaturalNews) After much deliberation, the European Union (EU) Commission has decided to scrap its zero tolerance policy concerning the contamination of its animal feed supply with genetically-modified organisms (GMO). Despite the fact that, year after year, farmers continue to dump GM crops and consumers continue to reject them, the Commission has decided to cave to pressure placed upon it by U.S. biotechnology giants like Monsanto.

As early as Summer 2011, the EU will tolerate the contamination of its animal feed supply with up to 0.1 percent untested and unapproved GMO materials. Though much of the EU feed supply is already ridden with approved GMOs such as GM corn from South America (http://www.naturalnews.com/031382_GM_soy_GMO...), it will soon contain traces of even more GMOs, many of which have been outlawed for human consumption throughout the EU due to their toxicity and the environmental damage they cause.

"Setting a tolerance threshold, however low, is a sign that Europe is losing control over its own food production to please American exporters," said Greenpeace EU agriculture policy adviser Stefanie Hundsdorfer, in response to the decision. "The danger now is that EU countries come under pressure from the pro-GM lobby to also allow GM contamination in food products for direct human consumption."

At the same time that the EU Commission eliminated the zero tolerance policy, farmer acceptance of GM crops continues to plummet. Cultivation of GM corn throughout Europe, for instance, has declined 13 percent in 2010 compared to 2009. In Romania, GM corn cultivation dropped an astounding 75 percent, while in the Czech Republic it dropped 28 percent.

European farmers are abandoning GM crops because consumers simply do not want to purchase and eat them. Because GM foods must be labeled throughout Europe, consumers can make a conscious decision about whether or not to purchase them -- as opposed to in the US where labeling is not required. As a result, the vast majority of Europeans choose non-GM and organic foods instead, which has naturally driven GMOs out of the European market almost entirely.

"Today's European data shows that GM crops are failing in the field and on the market," added Hundsdorfer. "Farmers and consumers are not falling for biotech industry propaganda. GM crops are not more productive and are less resistant to extreme climate conditions than normal crops. They do however present a serious risk for our environment."

Sources for this story include:

http://www.greenpeace.org/eu-unit/press-cent...

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