Australian, Canadian and US organisations sign against GM wheat

Posted by Janice Wong on 5th June 2009

A joint statement made by Australian, Canadian and US Farmer, Environmental and Consumer Organisations has been released, restating opposition to genetically modified (GE) wheat and commitment to stop commercialisation of GE traits in wheat crops.

The statement, titled “Definitive Global Rejection of Genetically Engineered Wheat” makes the following arguments for naturally-grown wheat and against GM wheat:

– wheat accounts for “two-thirds of the diet of the world’s population”;
– wheat breeding, particularly locally-bred varieties are adapted to the soil and climate conditions and critical to ensuring local food supplies during times of weather-related disasters;
– the high levels of irreversible contamination, poses a decisive threat to organic farming and the production of crop varieties bred specifically for local conditions;
– the lead to corporate control over seeds;
– continued scientific uncertainty; and
– research from wheat organisations (including the Australian Wheat Board) indicates very strong market rejection of GE wheat.

The Australian signatories are the Network of Concerned Farmers (Australia), Organic Federation of Australia, Biological Farmers of Australia, and Gene Ethics (Australia).

The statement has also been signed by international organisation Greenpeace.