4 June 1999

Public resents lack of GM crop information

THE general public feels it has been kept in the dark about genetic modification and is suspicious about the motives behind biotechnology, according to a government commissioned survey.

In the survey carried out by pollsters MORI, only 1% of respondents thought genetically modified food was beneficial to society, compared with 45% who thought it was definitely not beneficial.

MORI carried out the poll within six workshops at venues across the UK and 1100 interviews nation-wide. The most common reasons given for the appearance of GM food was to boost crop yields and make companies more money.

Cheaper food was another key reason for the development of the biotechnology industry quoted by respondents.

The public also felt that the government had not done enough to tell people about the developing technology, with 43% saying they did not trust the government.