Environmental campaigners are protesting in a bid to halt a trial of genetically modified maize. The demonstration is taking place outside one of the Government's proposed genetically modified evaluation sites in Wolston, Warwickshire.
It comes after the chairman of the independent Scientific Steering Committee (SSC) dismissed a report from Environment Minister Michael Meacher, to abandon the trial.
The Royal Society for the Protection of Birds belongs to the SCC but supports Mr Meacher's request to abandon the trial. RSPB volunteer Tom Henry, who has joined protesters at the farm gate in Wolston, said: "I have volunteered for the RSPB for years and would now expect them to pull out of this farce of a committee.
"Highly toxic herbicides will be used in these trials that can only lead to further decline in farmland birds. I do not understand why the RSPB is involved in such work."
Local Friends of the Earth campaigner Lorna Jackson said: "This committee is supposed to be looking after the interests of wildlife not the interests of the multi-national agrochemical companies.
"The chairman has written to all members of the committee and basically told them to ignore Mr Meacher's request to abandon a badly sited trial.
"The RSPB has taken a lot of flak for being on this committee. Now they are standing up for the organic industry they may find themselves alienated from the rest of what is supposed to be an independent scientific committee."