GM is the threat - response to Gale
According to Gale, "There are no risks from GM," which is jolly lucky beause previously Gale's admitted that for the John Innes Centre, where he is based, any serious slowing down on GM would be "very, very serious for us" in terms of support from industry.
July 26, 2004 [via Agnet]
Joanna Clarke of Glasgow, Scotland, writes to ask if she detects the beginning of the latest phase in the campaign to make us eat genetically-modified food (your report, 21 July).
First, we were told we had to eat GM whether we liked it or not, because soon there would be nothing else on the supermarket shelves.
When it became clear we wouldn't eat it, we were told starvation in the third world would only be solved if Europe agreed to eat GM.
When the main overseas aid organisations scotched that myth, we were called anti-science Luddites.
When we proved thick-skinned, we were told GM was good for the environment.
Now that reports of increasing pesticide use on GM crops with time and the results of the farm scale evaluations have put that idea into a different perspective, we are told we will all be in the "grip of a food crisis in as little as 15 years, perhaps even ten" unless we embrace GM.
We have moved from coercion, through moral imperative, insults and environmental concern, to a direct personal threat.
In 1996, pro-Natural Food Scotland forecast global famine within 30 years if our staple crops were allowed to be progressively weakened by artificial genetic intrusions. Since then, revelations about the molecular instability of the DNA in transfected plants, plus the ease with which our staple crops are being contaminated with genes which generate toxins, have served to strengthen this opinion.
We will wake up one day to find entire sections of our food supply have failed or become unfit for human consumption.
"People are dying because of the agriculture industry's obsession with hi-tech fixes like GM. Sustainable agricultural techniques and political solutions like land reform are driven off the agenda by the greed and arrogance of the biotechnology industries."