Victoria extends moratorium on GM crops
Network of Concerned Farmers Press Release
Thursday 25th March, 2004
The Victorian State Government extended their moratorium on GM crops for another 4 years today. "This is great news and we would like to congratulate the Victorian government for making this decision," said Geoffrey Carracher, Victorian Spokesperson for the Network of Concerned Farmers.
"Victorian farmers will be elated because the majority of farmers are against the commercial release at this stage. This will give us time to look carefully at what is fact and what is fiction and if there is a resolvable solution," said Mr Carracher.
On Monday, West Australia announced a total ban on GM crops with the Minister adopting a gate-keeper approach to future releases and a decision is expected soon in South Australia regarding GM-free zoning. Attention is now focussed on NSW now as farmers are anxiously awaiting a controversial decision regarding large scale commercial trials.
"To support commercial release would have been foolish as the decision is irreversible and the industry is not prepared. Traditional canola growers were expected to pay for the costs relating to the introduction of GM canola. At the moment Australian growers have the world as their market, why should we be prepared to lose markets?"
"Farmers are being misled on a number of issues and this moratorium will allow us to look at the real facts about risks and possible benefits."
"It is a relief that governments are realising we are not prepared to give away our non-GM status for nothing."
Geoffrey Carracher (Victoria) 03 53866261
Julie Newman (WA) 08 98711562 or 08 98711644
Juliet McFarlane (NSW) 02 6382 2506