Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

Europe impedes improvement of crops in the developing world.

26.02.2007
On Tuesday the 20 February 2007, Connie Hedegaard, Danish Minister for the Environment announced at a public discussion organised by Friends of Europe, that she was concerned if Europe has a negative effect on countries in the developing world by imposing its standards on the rest of the world with regard to regulation on Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO).

As a follow-up to this event, plant researchers from the developing world met in Brussels at a meeting organised by European Action on Global Life Sciences (EAGLES). The purpose of the meeting was to discuss how European regulation on GM foods influence legislators in the developing world to call for unnecessary tough testing.

Thousands of people die every day in the developing world due to hunger or the use of harmful pesticides in agriculture. No death or any illness throughout the world has ever been connected to the use of GMO. The zero tolerance of GM foods unauthorised in Europe and the labelling of GM foods imported to Europe have a huge influence on legislators and research funding organisations in the developing countries. Even countries which have no export of foods to Europe are afraid of approving or supporting the development of GM foods because of European policy.

Former head of unit at the European Commission, DG Research and head of the unit of biotechnology at the OECD Mark F. Cantley said: ”The global influence of the European policy on GMO has a massive economic and political impact on our trading partners. The economic and political disincentives Europe imposes to the use of more modern and precise technologies and more environmentally friendly agricultural production makes it impossible for the developing world to develop new improved crops. We have painted ourselves into a corner in Europe, from which we shall not easily escape, and from which we have a malign influence on poor countries all over the world”.

Professor Jennifer Thomson from University of Cape Town says: “Genetically modified maize resistant to the devastating African endemic maize streak virus is in the pipeline for field trials. The problems of regulation are therefore of immediate importance. We are concerned about what we consider the over-regulation prevalent in Europe and question whether this may prevent, or severely delay, the approval of these plants that are desperately needed by poor Africans, many of whom eat maize three times a day.”

Professor Zen Zhangliang President of Beijings Agricultural University said: “In China we have a long tradition for plant development. Genetic engineering is a better and more precise technology. We have already many Chinese GM products on the market and we will invest massively in agricultural biotechnology in the coming years. It does not seem rational to me that the Europeans want to slow down their agricultural development with superfluous and heavy regulations.”

Professor Marc van Montagu, Department of Molecular Genetics, Ghent University and president of European Federation of Biotechnology (EFB) concluded at the meeting with following comment: “A sustainable agriculture and a less-polluting industry badly need the GM-technology and the transgenic plants developed, worldwide, over the last ten years. Exactly in the same period, well-intentioned regulators in the EU set up an unnecessary and very costly application of the regulatory system. No small or medium enterprise, public research centre, charity or foundation can afford to open a file for approval through the established system. It is a crying injustice towards the developing world, towards nearly 85% of the world population.

Jens Degett | alfa
Further information:
http://www.efb-central.org/eagles/site

More articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science:

nachricht New 3-D model predicts best planting practices for farmers
26.06.2017 | Carl R. Woese Institute for Genomic Biology, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

nachricht Fighting a destructive crop disease with mathematics
21.06.2017 | University of Cambridge

All articles from Agricultural and Forestry Science >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Carbon Nanotubes Turn Electrical Current into Light-emitting Quasi-particles

Strong light-matter coupling in these semiconducting tubes may hold the key to electrically pumped lasers

Light-matter quasi-particles can be generated electrically in semiconducting carbon nanotubes. Material scientists and physicists from Heidelberg University...

Im Focus: Flexible proximity sensor creates smart surfaces

Fraunhofer IPA has developed a proximity sensor made from silicone and carbon nanotubes (CNT) which detects objects and determines their position. The materials and printing process used mean that the sensor is extremely flexible, economical and can be used for large surfaces. Industry and research partners can use and further develop this innovation straight away.

At first glance, the proximity sensor appears to be nothing special: a thin, elastic layer of silicone onto which black square surfaces are printed, but these...

Im Focus: 3-D scanning with water

3-D shape acquisition using water displacement as the shape sensor for the reconstruction of complex objects

A global team of computer scientists and engineers have developed an innovative technique that more completely reconstructs challenging 3D objects. An ancient...

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Clash of Realities 2017: Registration now open. International Conference at TH Köln

26.07.2017 | Event News

Closing the Sustainability Circle: Protection of Food with Biobased Materials

21.07.2017 | Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

CCNY physicists master unexplored electron property

26.07.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Molecular microscopy illuminates molecular motor motion

26.07.2017 | Life Sciences

Large-Mouthed Fish Was Top Predator After Mass Extinction

26.07.2017 | Earth Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>