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.
Hafizullah Mohaqiq was born in Afghanistan, spent periods living in Pakistan and Iran, before arriving in Shepparton two months ago.
The Mulwala Lions had satisfying and hard fought win, in difficult conditions, against last year’s grand finalists at Lonsdale Reserve on Saturday.
The Fairley Leadership Program met in Tatura on Wednesday, exploring ‘Water and our catchment’ at Goulburn Murray Water.
Road authorities have made little progress to fixing Echuca’s most dangerous intersections.
Lockington Vintage Tractor and Stationary Engine Rally is on for the 18th time this weekend and there is something for everyone.
Kyabram and District Sportstar of the Year nominations finalised
Three local clubs get together at Kings Park.
Tributes flow for Finley's inspiring mother, friend and farming advocate Jennifer Hawkins
A visit by Coliban Water to Heathcote last week provided residents with a chance to quiz staff about water and sewer services.
A new book, Men from the River Bends, honours Cobram-Barooga and district soldiers who paid the ultimate sacrifice after enlisting in World War 1.
Deniliquin bowler Dennis O'Keefe lost 25-19 in his bid for a quarter-final spot in the Victorian Singles Championships this week.
Widespread rain late last week and on Saturday put a smile on the faces of farmers preparing to sow crops or waiting for weeds to emerge on early-sown rye-grass.
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