Civil society fighting back in Peru
NOTE: In relation to papaya, which is being used as the entry crop for GM in Peru, then non-GM disease resistant papaya are available and are set to restore the papaya industry in virus-infested regions of the world without any need for GM.
CIVIL SOCIETY IN PERU REJECT APPROVAL OF BIOSAFETY REGULATION
RALLT - La Red Por una America Latina Libre de Transgenicos (The Network for a GE free Latin America), May 2 2011
Different sectors of the civil society in Peru, including several of the most important groups of farmers, scientists and chefs of Peru formed a coalition to combat the recent authorization by the Government for entry of GM seeds into the country. The coalition was launched at the headquarters of the National Convention of Peruvian Agriculture (Conveagro), announcing the start of several actions to "ensure respect for the rights to food sovereignty and security is obtained through biodiversity, agriculture and Peruvian cuisine."
In this regard, participants noted that Peru is one of the most important countries - "mega-diverse", and the entry of GM seeds can permanently damage its agriculture.
The sectorial Regulations for Biosafety of GMOs for Agriculture, Forestry, and their Derived Products were approved and published as Supreme Decree No 003-2011-AG and signed by the President and by the Minister of Agriculture of Peru on April 14 2011, after a long opposition of the Ministry of the Environment who fostered a moratorium on the approval of GMOs.
The approved regulations will allow the National Institute of Agricultural Innovation (INIA) of the Ministry of Agriculture to exercise powers of regulation, risk analysis and monitoring on applications for agro-GM field testing and production in Peru. The agricultural research centre INIA, is in the process of developing a local GM papaya.
The Supreme Decree was adopted a month before the elections of the new Peruvian president (which will take place the first week of June).
The demands of the coalition, which includes the repeal of Presidential Decree and a moratorium on the release of GMOs in Peru, has been supported by several international organizations and networks such as the Andean Coordinator of Indigenous Organizations, a network for a GE Free Latin American, the network of doctors from fumigated villages.