Yesterday, we described how British activist Mark Lynas apologized for how he assisted in demonizing an important technological option which can be used to benefit the environment. Of course, he was referring to genetic engineering technology and genetically modified foods. Apparently, it s going to take a lot more than one man coming out in favor of this movement, though Poland has just banned the cultivation of GM crops approved by the European Food Safety Authority, effective Jan. 28.
European Union regulations allow an individual member state to choose to ban the cultivation of a crop if evidence is presented showing that a crop can be harmful. Poland s Ministry of Agriculture specifically cited concerns relating to cross-pollination of non-GM crops by GM crops.
And the fight continues. Joanna Bear, the Greenpeace Poland Stop GMO campaign coordinator, says, Now we need to make sure that the European Commission does not manage to lift the Polish bans like it ineffectively attempted to do so earlier, when other countries introduced similar bans. We have to also make sure crops will be effectively controlled, and the ban on cultivation observed.
Unfortunately, Poland is not the only European country to ban cultivation of GM crops. It joins seven others, including Austria, France, Germany, Hungary, Luxembourg, Greece and Bulgaria.
This Luddite attitude will put these European countries behind in efforts to increase food production and benefit the environment, says ACSH s Dr. Ruth Kava. It could also affect the willingness of developing countries, which stand to benefit the most from these technologies, to use them.
ACSH s Dr. Josh Bloom adds, It would seem that they are concerned about a nonexistent risk in their own neighborhood, while mass starvation across Africa is OK. Bunch of hypocrites.