Syngenta chair condemns ‘anti-scientific’ stance on GMs

European politicians and consumers are anti-scientific and too wary of GMs and other technologies, Martin Taylor chairman of Syngenta has said.

EU agriculture policy is not making the production challenge easy for UK farmers to address, Mr Taylor said.

It can stifle technological advance and innovation, which is essential if UK farmers are to play their part in helping to feed 9bn people by 2050, he claimed.

“There is something perverse in the development of EU agricultural policy.  In the 1990s we subsidised over-production and dumped surplus.  Now that food worldwide is scarcer we are preventing intensive agricultural methods just to make things slightly worse for the world,” Mr Taylor said. 

“We are not going to arrive at good environmental policies by turning our back on science and the rest of the world doesn’t think Europe is being very clever,” he said.

“British farmers are among the most experienced, productive and technologically advanced in the world.  We have the most conducive climates and the quality of our produce is without equal.

“About 1bn people go to bed hungry every night, which is a scandal given that we have the means to feed them,” he said.  

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