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Martin Ferris slams decision to allow GM crop trials

5 May, 2006

Sinn Féin Spokesperson on Agriculture, Martin Ferris TD has slammed the decision by the Environmental Protection Agency to give permission for the German company BASF to grow a crop of genetically modified potatoes at Summerhill, County Meath. The decision was made despite numerous objections from local residents and farmers, and from others with scientific knowledge of the dangers of contamination which GM crops pose to traditional and organic varieties.

Deputy Ferris said: “The EPA decision is a disgrace. Once again a statutory body in this state has gone against the weight of public opinion and scientific evidence on cross contamination of crops, to allow the multi national corporations to ride roughshod over the wishes and best interests of Irish farmers and consumers. As I have pointed out on numerous occasions, there has never been a proper debate here, nor has any elected body ever voted in favour of introducing GM crops or food products. In fact many elected bodies, including Cavan County Council and Navan UDC have voted to declare their areas GM free.

“The question must be posed therefore, in whose interests are these decisions being made? And on what criteria? It would appear to myself and others that this state is simply following the EU’s dishonest caving in to enormous pressure from the United States to allow the GM corporations to tighten their grip on the food chain. Those who suffer will be Irish farmers and consumers.” ENDS

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