28 June 2000
Fayed to sue over GM blunder

HARRODS boss Mohamed al-Fayed is preparing to sue the government for its part in the recent genetically modified crop blunder, reports the Daily Mail.

Up to 600 holdings were unwittingly planted GM oilseed rape which seed supplier Advanta Seeds had mixed with conventional seed by mistake.

One of those affected was Mr al-Fayeds Balnagown estate in the Scottish Highlands.

Mr al-Fayed accuses the government of “deliberate criminal negligence” and argues that planting could have been avoided if farm minister Nick Brown had acted sooner.

The ministry of agriculture knew of the contamination two weeks before the seed was planted, reports the Mail.

It waited four weeks before making an announcement.

Mr Fayeds lawsuit, backed by the National Farmers Union of Scotland, will be made on behalf of 150 Scottish farmers who planted the tainted seed.

Although Advanta has offered compensation, Mr al-Fayed argues that the issue goes beyond short-term monetary compensation.

The rogue crop on Mr al-Fayeds estate has now been destroyed.