The outcome of the Western Australia court case won't change certification standardsJune 3, 2014 3:20am
The Supreme Court case between Western Australian farmers Steve Marsh and Michael Baxter opened a fresh can of worms after the ruling last Wednesday.
Because the Australian organic standard considers cross pollination to be contamination, the disagreement between the GM and organic sectors on the rules and legal protection of the respective industries has flared.
While GM foods are legal, the consumer demand for organic food is noticeable and the Australian Organic Market Report found 62 per cent of organic consumers bought organic because it was non-GM.
Australia is the only country with an organic certification standard that requires organic foods to be 100 per cent GM-free.
Australian Organic’s chairman Andrew Monk said the organisation would stand behind the Australian certified organic standard and the organisation wanted to see a review of the laws and codes of GM production.
He said increasing land buffer zones between properties and changing harvesting practices would help reduce genetic contamination risks.
‘‘Unfortunately GM technology has imposed some significant additional risk management and testing requirements on the organic sector,’’ Dr Monk said.
‘‘GM testing has joined the ranks of the pesticide and herbicide tests that we already do.’’
He said Australian Organic would continue to stand by its Australian Certified Organic Standard which prohibited GM materials.
‘‘Growing food without synthetic chemicals, without cages and without the use of hormones, antibiotics and GM is not an ideology,’’ Dr Monk said.
‘‘It’s not ideological to meet consumer expectations, it’s good business sense.’’
According to IBISWorld, organic farming was one of Australia’s best performing agricultural industries and expected to grow 50 per cent due to customer demand in the next five years.
The Shepparton Passenger Services Working Group has been named and is ready to assess the region's rail passenger issues.
Yarrawonga Football Netball Club senior footballer Jeremy O’Brien celebrated his 200th senior Ovens and Murray Football Netball League game against the Wodonga Bulldogs on Saturday.
Tatura Men’s Shed members enjoyed an interactive information session on Tuesday with Council on the Ageing’s Alan Bull.
Echuca's Sarah Baldwin played her 50th game for the Bendigo Thunder on Sunday.
Rochester student James Bolitho recently returned from India, spending time with students teaching swimming.
100 days at Tongala Primary.
Nagambie Primary School students - and budding green thumbs - have produced something truly special.
A man who attempted, but failed miserebly, to rob the Tocumwal Pie Shed is still on the run from police.
About 80 people attended Friday's community meeting at Heathcote RSL to discuss concerns about exposure to industrial antimony.
Black Dog ride participants meet up in Cobram before they burn rubber to beat the blues.
A top-three finish is on the cards for the Deni Rovers after they knocked off Jerilderie on Saturday.
Wheat crops sown at the end of April to mid-May were two to three weeks early, increasing the risk of frost damage, the Finley Discussion Group’s meetings earlier this month heard.
Benalla resident Vince Branigan uncovered more of Swanpool's history after discovering an old photograph.
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