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GM is no advantage to farmers - Ferris

14 May, 2004

The Sinn Féin Spokesperson for Agriculture Martin Ferris has rubbished claims that GM crops are of any advantage to farmers. Deputy Ferris was responding to a statement by Dr. Pat O'Mahony of the Food Safety Authority of Ireland who appeared yesterday before the Dáil Committee on Health and Children. Dr. O'Mahony did admit that GM was of no benefit to consumers but went on to state that the advantage was to farmers.

Deputy Ferris said: "I welcome the admission by Dr. O'Mahony that there is no advantage to the consumer in having GM food products. Neither is there any benefit to farmers. That has been proven by extensive trials in the United States and in Britain which prove that GM crops like maize, soya and sugar beet have lower yields and lower profit margins than conventional crops.

"Irish farmers need to be aware of this as GM crops will be promoted here on the basis that they will improve farm income. They will not, and apart from that they will damage Irish food exports as polls have shown that over 70% of EU consumers do not want GM. It is clear in fact that the only people to benefit from GM are the giant agri business corporations and that is not a good enough reason for this country to allow them to sell their products and grow their crops here." ENDS

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