18 October 1999
GM deabate — from 6 August, 1999
GM debate — Readers have their say
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EVEN this shall pass away.
RoundUp resistance seems to be the center of the talk; however, us Yanks are doing BT corn.
Some studies about eight years ago found that the insects that had resistance to OPs and other insecticides developed a resistance to Bt in about 3 generations.
In mid-west US, we are already having problems with RoundUp resistance.
Im not so much worried about the health problems as having to get out the
Outside the discussion, I havent seen much on the continental dioxin. Is
Wallace Deen, Richmond, Missouri, USA
ALTHOUGH the long-term risks, if any, of GM products are unknown, I
Arable cropland will continue to decrease in availability, in lock-step with increases in population.
If we are to feed the world, GM is the most likely way forward.
Benjamen Hempstead, Croton, Ohio, USA
I BELIEVE the public is being duped by junk science.
Actually there are very few plants and animals – including pets – that resemble their ancestors of 100 years ago.
Mendel started genetic manipulation years ago; today, with advanced
No name and address supplied
I THINK that we have to have research into GM crops and the Government and the media, along with Lord Melchett and his people at Greenpeace, have hyped it up so that the general public dont know what to think.
And as for Greenpeace going on to farms and destroying crops, especially when they pull up and destroy non-GM crops, they should be prosecuted, but as usual nothing will be done and they will be allowed to carry on and cause criminal damage and trespass on private property.
Nikki Anderson, Dereham, Norfolk
NOW is a time to wait; we cannot make decisions on the safety of these crops without proper testing.
What we need to know at the moment is exactly how each individual case has been tested and the results that have been given so far.
For instance, have they actually found out how safe these plants are, not only to people but to their enviroment? They talk of results from these, but I have never seen where and how these experiments have been carried out.
They say that a governing body that tested these plants before excepting them into the food chain exsists but, if so, where are the results of these many experiments.
Most of us now understand the techniques used and the implications of GM crops – now the information we are
OK, so they may make weeds resistant, but to what extent?
No name and address supplied
GM foods are so common in the supermarkets, that only now through the
Only last week when we bought cheese from the co-op it was marked that
We have no idea how long GM substances have been included in the products.
Name not supplied
THE British public are weary enough of farming prctices, and GM crops are not needed in the UK for the time being, as we supply ample food at low cost.
Farmers using GMs will put themselves in the hands of large corporations whose only motives are to restrict farmers choices and in turn make larger profits for the companies, not for farmers!
Nigel P Donkin, Selby, North Yorkshire
THE thought of seeds which are sterile, sown into the grown to provide food fills me with horror.
Farmers are the food-producers of the earth. If they cannot save their “seed corn” for the future, what will happen if these seeds “take over” and all the other seeds die out.
We will be at the mercy of the seed producers, their stocks will dwindle and worldwide famine could be hovering on the horizon.
This is a sci-fi scenario, I know, and rational thought may show that it is
Organophosphates (OPs) may not be the worst man-made introduction – GM crops could top the OP debacle.
Leave it alone, dont let Monsanto or any of the other big companies dictate how the earth will look for our childrens children.
We should listen to the Mark Purdys of this world, not treat them like idiots
I AM not certain that all possible risks have been carefully identified, but I am sure that no one will ever know about GM safety if we allow the Luddites to keep tearing up trials.
It says something about peoples expectation of the results of trials when they try to destroy them before the results can be identified.
As in the case of tobacco companies, we must make sure that trials are properly carried out and all results published.
Regrettably, it is a well-known ploy to abandon those trials that are not giving the results you want to see.
Tony Whitsed, Spalding, Lincolnshire
CROSS-POLLINATION with non-GM crops is a real problem – bees travel great distances.
Crops bred to withstand increased strengths of herbicide will become a weed in their own right.
Bruce Hunningham, Leamington Spa, Warwickshire
THERE is no need for GM crops to be grown.
We need to look to our future generations and look after our farms and countryside which are being destroyed by “all take and no give”.
ALTHOUGH I have said that I think UK farmers will grow GM crops one day, I am strongly against the GM principle.
Just because we can, does not necessarily mean we should. There will inevitably be damage to the environment and the natural order of things, especially our wildlife.
I have yet to hear one genuine
We should cease to behave in such an arrogant manner with Gods Creation.
PRO-GM arguments are based on poor information.
For example, suggesting we need GM technology to feed the world is no argument for its introduction, since we have poor prices worldwide due to over-production already.
People starve because of war and politics, not because farmers can not produce enough.
GM crops have only one benefit, and that is the enlargement of the coffers of
Richard Bedhall, Tenbury Wells, Worcestershire
GM crops mean too much technology. too quickly. The implications are serious if things go wrong.
GM crop research must continue, if only to prove that the products are safe.
David Sherlock, Billingshurst, West Sussex
LONG-TERM, GM could be a disaster, while offering no real short-term
No name and address supplied
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