A bid to block the commercial growth of genetically modified (GM) canola failed to gain support at the NSW Farmers Association annual conference last week
FARMERS concerned about the impact of genetically modified (GM) canola have failed to gain support for a bid to put commercial production of the crop on hold.
An urgency motion to NSW Farmers Association's annual conference last week sought to stall commercial cropping of GM canola until governments develop and impose adequate conditions and protocols for co-existence with conventional canola.
The conference rejected that motion but later carried another urging governments to protect farmers who want to grow conventional canola from any costs arising from cross-contamination, liability, segregation and any other detrimental issues associated with commercial production of genetically modified (GM) canola.
That motion was carried by 93 votes to 64 and was supported by another conference call for transparent labelling of GM ingredients in all imported and domestic products, including livestock.
In a see-sawing debate on the controversial GM issue NSW Farmers also backed a motion that it inform its members and consumers of the known and potential benefits of GM technology in food crops, and of the role the Office of Gene Technology Regulator and Food Standards Australia and New Zealand in protecting the health and safety of people and the environment.
The NSW Government this year ended its moratorium on the commercial production of GM canola but only small quantities are being grown this year.