Tampering with nature

On May 24-26, BIOWATCH, an environmental non governmental organization (ngo) will be in court demanding that the Department of Agriculture give it access to information on where genetically modified crops are being cultivated.

Biowatch claims that the government has flouted an international agreement on bio safety by granting permission for the growth of genetically modified crops before a proper risk assessment was done.

Many believe that genetically modified organisms (GMOs) pose potential dangers to the environment, to people’s and animals’ health. The danger comes from the way in which genes are artificially inserted or removed between species. No-one knows what the long term effects of tampering with nature will be.

Biowatch and fellow environmental organisation, EJNF, plan to:

lobby the South African government to review its policy on GMOs and to suspend GMO trials in South Africa
organise consumer rights campaigns to boycott producers and exporters of GMO products
campaign for the labelling of products known to contain GMOs
monitor distribution of GMOs until their positive and negative effects are proven
lobby for nations to invest in and promote organic farming as part of sustainable development strategies
campaign for the freeing of the land from GMO contamination.

(Watch the press for details and see the next Numsa Bulletin, No 12, coming to you in June/July for a longer article on GMOs)