2.Thank you South Australia!
EXTRACTS: 'We were shocked to hear that your farmers who want to stay GM-free are scared to speak out, under company and agribusiness pressure for GM canola,' said Ms Koketsu of Consumers Union of Japan.
'In Canada, Monsanto and Bayer have also stopped selling GM-free canola seed as patented GM seed is more profitable, so all Canadian canola is GM now.' (item 1)
1.Japanese tell Australia, stay GM free
NEWS MEDIA RELEASE
Victoria, Wednesday February 20 2008
A delegation from the Consumers Union of Japan (CUJ) will visit the Australian Embassy in Tokyo tomorrow (21/2), to ask the new Australian government to ban Genetically Manipulated (GM) canola. CUJ has 1,250 member organisations that represent over 2 million Japanese shoppers.
And in Australia, Michiyo Koketsu and Ryoko Shimizu from CUJ are asking for Australian GM-free canola. At Horsham yesterday, they urged over 200 farmers to continue growing GM-free.
'We were shocked to hear that your farmers who want to stay GM-free are scared to speak out, under company and agribusiness pressure for GM canola,' said Ms Koketsu of Consumers Union of Japan.
'We share your farmers' concerns about being overrun and contaminated by GM canola, and losing markets especially in Japan.
'Feral GM canola is growing all around Japanese ports though we do not even grow canola.
'We need you to keep supplying us with GM-free. Eighteen countries grow GM-free canola (only Canada and the USA grow GM) but Australia is the sole exporter of GM-free canola on world markets.
'We are worried that our clean, green GM-free choice will be taken away.
'Over 90% of Coles and Foodland customers also want GM-free food so we appeal to Australian people and governments to extend the GM canola bans.
'Western Australia, South Australia and Tasmania have listened to their overseas and Australian customers and we are grateful that those states will remain GM-free,' said Ms Ryoko Shimizu of the Policy Research Institute for the Civil Sector, a member of CUJ.
'Our members pay a lot for Australia's GM-free products because we have deep concerns over the health and safety of GM foods.
'We know that some GM foods are unsafe for experimental animals and humans, though most have not been independently tested.
'We want Victoria and New South Wales to extend their GM bans, so the whole of Australia stays GM-free and your wholesome clean, green reputation is kept.
'We know from Percy Schmeiser at the Horsham meeting, and other Canadian farmers, that GM canola contamination can spread nation-wide.
'In Canada, Monsanto and Bayer have also stopped selling GM-free canola seed as patented GM seed is more profitable, so all Canadian canola is GM now.
'GM-free is the way we want to stay and we ask Australians to help us,' Ms Shimizu concludes.
For more comment:
Ryoko Shimizu T: 0412 077 630 or 0011 81-90-6001-0495 (Japanese mobile, int. roaming) After 3pm 03 9347 4500
2.Thank you South Australia!
Consumers Union of Japan, February 19 2008 http://cujtokyo.wordpress.com/2008/02/19/thank-you-south-australia/
Consumers Union of Japan took the initiative to the No! GMO Campaign that started in 1996 as a Japanese group of citizens that were alarmed by the many problems associated with genetically manipulated (GM) food.
We were very encouraged and pleased recently as we received the news that South Australia decided to keep its GM moratorium. We wish to express our sincere appreciation to South Australia for taking this step. We would like to further ask that the strict GM-free policy is permanently maintained, for the sake of both consumers' health and the environment. GM crops should be eliminated, and not accepted.
We strongly request that South Australia makes sure not to let GM canola be cultivated in South Australia now or in the future.