‘Misleading’ GM attack

THE ROYAL Society has said that the parliamentary Environmental Audit Committee has made “misleading criticisms” of the GM farm-scale trials.

The Royal Society also urged the EAC to withdraw its criticisms, which were published in the committee‘s report on the farm-scale trials.

Lord May of Oxford, president of the Royal Society, said:

“I have expressed my disappointment to the Committee that they have still not publicly withdrawn their misleading criticism of the journal papers about the GM farm trials.”

“The committee‘s statement, about ‘significant doubts as to the robustness, validity and relevance‘ of the results of the farm scale evaluations, was both inaccurate and damaging.”

“The papers describing the results of the trials were subjected to a rigorous independent peer review before publication in the journal,” Lord May said.

The statement from the Royal Society was issued on Wednesday (May 5).

In the House of Commons debate on GMs on the same day, the EAC‘s chairman, Peter Ainsworth MP (Conservative), said:

“I have raised these criticisms and concerns, and will continue to do so, because I believe that the curious government response to the GM debate is symptomatic of a wider attitude in some powerful quarters of the scientific establishment, which – alas – appears to include the Royal Society.”

“That attitude is unscientifically based on the ruling hypothesis that GM crops are an unequivocal benefit to mankind.”

“There is no evidence that that hypothesis is correct. Significant doubts remain. Much more work needs to be done. The public are not satisfied.”

“The debate will go on, however hard the government tries to close it down and however many genetically modified raspberries they, the Royal Society or anyone else may blow at public opinion.”