Environmentalists have voiced their concerns surrounding the unknown threat genetically modified foods have on the natural environment following a unique Supreme Court ruling last week.June 3, 2014 3:06am
Environmentalists have voiced their concerns surrounding the unknown threat genetically modified foods have on the natural environment following a unique Supreme Court ruling last week.
Western Australian organic farmer Steve Marsh sued his neighbour Michael Baxter, alleging he lost his organic certification for more than half his farm after GM canola drifted onto his land from Mr Baxter’s property.
The court ruled against Mr Marsh, stating there was no evidence of any genetic transference risk by the GM canola.
Goulburn Murray environment group chairman John Pettigrew said genetically modified plants or ‘‘super-plants’’ posed a possible threat to organic or native species.
‘‘Our worry is some super-plants are a risk to our native environment and landscapes,’’ Mr Pettigrew said.
‘‘We see genetically modified foods (as being) similar to cane toads purely because of the risk if they escaped into our native vegetation.’’
Mr Pettigrew said a GM plant’s advantage could be a hindrance if the need to control it arose.
‘‘If they are herbicide-resistant it reduces the way we can control them if they escape,’’ he said.
Victorian Farmers Federation grains group president Brett Hosking said the case was unfortunate for the farmers involved, who were once good friends.
‘‘Discussions on genetically modified foods have a lot of emotion, but we have to discuss the emotion along with the facts,’’ Mr Hosking said.
‘‘It’s an opportunity for organic regulators to look at their certification standards.’’
Mr Hosking said GM crops had scientific research and test procedures that proved they were safe for consumers, and people needed to remember GM crops had strict guidelines.
‘‘It goes before federal, state and sometimes government regulators,’’ he said.
He also said farmers who had chosen GM crops should respect their surrounds and be open with their community prior to planting.
Safe Food Foundation director Scott Kinnear said legislation needed to change.
‘‘State and federal governments have continuously stated that the solution to any GM contamination events is common law,’’ he said.
‘‘This has clearly failed and demonstrates that the law has not kept up with new technologies such as GM.’’
For more, see today's Country News.
A car and truck have collided at Barmah-Shepparton Rd in Bunbartha near Medland Rd. Both lanes are closed and people are asked to avoid the area.
The first preliminary final on Saturday saw the Tungamah seniors start their campaign against Waaia at the Rennie Recreation Reserve.
The Aboriginal and wider community is mourning the death of revered Bangerang Aboriginal elder, Uncle John ‘‘Sandy’’ Atkinson.
THREE words were chanted in unison at Hopwood Gardens, Echuca on Thursday night — bring them here.
TRUCKS, cars and vintage machinery took over Rochester Recreation Reserve on Tuesday last week.
KYABRAM’S Margaret and Leonard Flint have come a long way since meeting in the early 1950s.
Avenel win over Nagambie to take top spot
Berrigan Shire councillor Daryll Morris says he has been sickened by some of the vitriol and personal attacks to surface since the council’s proposal to redevelop Finley’s Memorial Hall and School of Arts site was revealed in October last year.
YOU probably wouldn’t expect to find an intensive care nurse running an award winning hotel and brewery, but that’s exactly what you will find when you visit Tooborac.
The preparations for the 10th Cobram Swap Meet have been given a boost with a brand new line marker. The Rotary Club of Cobram, which organise the swap meet, applied for a volunteer grant from the Federal Government, from which it received $4600.
At 77 years of age, popular local golfer Paul ‘Tango’ has claimed his second hole-in-one.
Tuesday, August 16
The News magazines are online - read high quality magazines in your time. Check in regularly for the latest editions.
Riverine Herald's well regarded locally produced magazines. They're now online, so you can read them whenever and wherever you like.
Search for published and unpublished photos from McPherson Media Group newspapers and magazines. All our photos are available to purchase.
Place an advertisement in any one of McPherson Media Group's local newspapers.