Unauthorised GM cotton contaminated animal feed
2.GM and non-GM crops cannot coexist (great collection of quotes)
EXTRACT: "This incident and a string of others that have come to light over the past two years show that the USDA is fundamentally incapable of protecting our food," said Karen Perry Stillerman, a food analyst at the Union of Concerned Scientists.
NOTE: Judging by the dates given in this article (item 1) this could well be an old story, but perennial! (see item 2)
1.FDA: Genetically altered cotton is no threat
Sun Journal, August 10, 2009
WASHINGTON - An unauthorized strain of genetically modified cotton was accidentally mixed in with other harvested cotton in Texas last month, but government officials on Wednesday played down any safety concerns.
About a quarter ton of the experimental cotton seed engineered to contain a protein that produces a pesticide was combined with about 60 tons of commercial cotton growing nearby, said Eric Flamm, a senior adviser at the Food and Drug Administration.
The mixture, grown near Lamesa in West Texas, about 300 miles west of Fort Worth, was then stored along with 20,000 tons of commercial cotton seed in a warehouse. Nearly half the crop was processed into cottonseed oil and cotton meal to use as animal feed before officials at Monsanto Co., which grows the experimental cotton on a test plot, realized the mistake.
Monsanto officials notified the government of the error on Nov. 10.
"We're talking about a very small amount, but nevertheless, a material that contains a pesticidal substance and has not been authorized for food or feed use," Flamm said on a conference call with reporters.
Flamm said most of the contaminated crop that was processed into animal feed had already been consumed at cattle feed lots.
Two truckloads of the crop were delivered to Mexico, and U.S. officials have notified that country.
The FDA, Environmental Protection Agency and Agriculture Department are investigating to determine what enforcement action is warranted against Monsanto.
Monsanto spokesman Lee Quarles said the crop was mistakenly harvested on Oct. 31, and the company learned about it eight days later when field researchers went to check on it and discovered it was not there. It is grown in a research plot adjacent to other cotton and separated by border rows.
"We've taken responsibility for this release and we're actively working to resolve it in a manner that's satisfactory with the USDA and other agencies," Quarles said.
Quarles said the protein has been determined to pose no threat to humans and approved for use in corn, but not yet in cotton. "This incident and a string of others that have come to light over the past two years show that the USDA is fundamentally incapable of protecting our food," said Karen Perry Stillerman, a food analyst at the Union of Concerned Scientists.
2.GM and non-GM crops cannot coexist
[original page has multiplke links to sources]
"OK, we know that cross-pollination will occur but we’ve got thirty years of experience to say we know how far pollen will travel. And therefore what we’ve done is we’ll grow a GM crop at a distance away from a non-GM crop, so the people that want non-GM can buy non-GM, and the people that want GM can buy GM. The two will not get mixed up. Everybody will have the right to choose." - Paul Rylott, Seed Manager for Aventis CropScience, and later chief spokesperson for the agricultural biotechnology industry in the UK, Matter of fact, BBC2 Eastern Region, broadcast 12 October 2000
"Global incidents of genetic contamination from genetically modified (GM) crops are on the rise, while the companies responsible ignore the consequences. Since 2005, the GM Contamination Register has recorded 216 contamination events in 57 countries since GM crops were first grown commercially on a large scale in 1996. While companies claim they can control the use of GM crops, the reality is very different." - Greenpeace International, Biotech companies fuel GM contamination spread, 29 February 2008
"If some people are allowed to choose to grow, sell and consume GM foods, soon nobody will be able to choose food, or a biosphere, free of GM. It's a one way choice, like the introduction of rabbits or cane toads to Australia; once it's made, it can't be reversed." - Roger Levett, specialist in sustainable development, Choice: Less can be more, Food Ethics, Vol. 3, No. 3, Autumn 2008
"The hope of the industry is that over time the market is so flooded [with GMOs] that there’s nothing you can do about it. You just sort of surrender." - Don Westfall, biotech industry consultant and vice-president of Promar International quoted in, “Starlink fallout could cost billions”, Toronto Star, 9 January 2001
"The industry is in reality making serious efforts, whether legally or illegally, to contaminate the cultivated species all over the world." - Devinder Sharma, trade policy analyst, The great genetic scandal, Center for Alternative Agricultural Media, 1 August 2002
"[Dale] Adolphe [of the Canadian Seed Growers Association] said it's ironic that even as public protests and opposition to GM food products seem to grow and even as new regulations and controls are put in place, the total acreage devoted to GM crops around the world is expanding. That may be what eventually brings the debate to an end, said Adolphe. 'It's a hell of a thing to say that the way we win is don't give the consumer a choice, but that might be it.'" - Adrian Ewins, quoting Dale Adolphe of the Canadian Seed Growers Association in “Biotech wins by giving consumers no choice", The Western Producer, 4 April 2002
"People will have [GM] Roundup Ready soya whether they like it or not." - Monsanto spokesperson in Britian, Ann Foster, The politics of food, Maria Margaronis, The Nation, 27 December 1999
"The US Department of Agriculture claims to know where the maize - banned from all food use globally and only recently approved for US exports - is located. Aventis, the French firm which developed the genetically modified maize sold throughout the US maize belt in 1999 and 2000, says it knows, also. So do I: StarLink maize is everywhere." - US agricultural journalist Alan Guebert, Another contamination scandal dents US biotech hopes, Farmers Weekly, 8 December 2000
"It's important for countries around the world to adopt a uniform standard of acceptable levels of contamination." - Biotechnology Industry Organization spokesperson, Lisa Dry quoted in, Engineered DNA found in crop seeds, Rick Weiss, Washington Post, 24 February 2004
"In 2006 it was discovered that 30% of the entire US long-grain rice supply had become contaminated by experimental GM rice varieties unapproved for human consumption. Not only was this a public safety disaster, but also cost the rice industry over $1 billion. The contamination source? 'Controlled' field trials." - The Soil Association, Government to defy critics with secret GM crop trials, Today's News, 17 November 2008
"If they can't prevent it there, there is little chance they will avoid it in the field." - Dr Brian Johnson of English Nature, after sugar beets genetically modified to resist one company's herbicide accidentally acquired GM genes resistant to another company’s herbicide, despite being grown in greenhouses. Stray genes highlight superweed danger, New Scientist, issue 2261, 21 October 2000
"Cross-pollination of the environment is an issue, and that has to be addressed. And for those countries that have very small landmass, there's no way they can segregate GM crops from conventional crops or from organic crops, and so the likelihood of cross pollination exists." - Prof Patrick Wall, until 2008 the Chairman of the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), the EU Agency mandated by the European Commission to advise on the safety of genetically modified food and animal feed for the European Union, in an interview: We cannot force-feed EU citizens with GM food, 2 December 2008
"The cultivation of genetically modified maize [in Spain] has caused a drastic reduction in organic cultivations of this grain and is making their coexistence practically impossible." - Conclusion of research published in the Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics: “An impossible coexistence: transgenic and organic agriculture", Universitat Autonoma de Barcelona, 30 June 2008
"Mexican plant biologist, Ignacio Chapela, and his student David Quist, were the target of attack for their painstaking research that established the spread of transgenes in the centre of origin of maize. Such genetic contamination would ultimately destroy the world's available genetic purity and in the very hotspots of diversity. The National Biodiversity Commission of Mexico accepted the findings. 'It is confirmed. There is no doubt about it,' Jorge Soberon of the Commission was reported as saying. Two separate teams found transgenic DNA in around 10 per cent of crop plants sampled in Oaxaca province, describing it as 'the world's worst case of GM contamination'." - Devinder Sharma, trade policy analyst, The great genetic scandal, Center for Alternative Agricultural Media, 1 August 2002. Quist and Chapela's findings were further confirmed by a study published in 2008, see Modified genes spread to local maize