View from the fence

Social, environmental and economic issues surrounding GM foods, and the latest news


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Enlightening discussions between an organic farmer and Monsanto

In doing some research for December’s news-roundup, I was very struck by a blog post from a Canadian organic farmer, Rob Wallbridge. He was given a guided tour of Monsanto which he approached with trepidation but with an open mind.

He said: “visiting Monsanto dispelled much of my trepidation about the technology of genetic engineering.”

I say: an organic farmer and Monsanto having an open discussion, that sounds like progress. Continue reading

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Monsanto withdraws EU applications for new crops

This month, Monsanto confirmed that it is withdrawing all of its EU applications for approval for new crops (around 10), apparently in frustration about the delays in clearing existing crops at EU level. It does not affect clearance for existing GM seeds in Portugal and Spain.

This raises interesting questions about whether the approval process is set up to allow cultivation of crops which are safe for both human consumption and the environment*, while not being so expensive that only the largest multi-nationals can afford it. Continue reading