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Meeting with Parliamentary Standing Commit

Representation to Parliamentary Standing Committee on GM Foods today we had a wonderful day in the meeting with parliamentary standing committee. Not sharing in detail as the scientists were asked to be frank and promised that they will not be quoted for what they say…by the committee… The meeting was well attended by the Scientists from Agri univ, DOR, DRR, NRCS, CRIDA, NBPGR, department of agriculture, farmers unions… Basudev Acharya in his opening remarks itself mentioned that there is a divided opinion on GM crops and particularly food crops. Mr. Chaturvedi, member of PSM on agril said he want specific information on a. whether state want to go for GM […]

NO HONEY BEES LIKE TO VISIT Bt. COTTON FLOWER

Preliminary Report by Kheti Virasat Mission, Punjab The initiative taken by KVM-DDS to find out the very impacts of Bt. Cotton on Honey Bees is in a continuous progress. Till now we have interacted with large number of farmers to get their general impression and properly interviewed 7 Honey Bee Keepers in Four districts of Punjab named as: Malkeet Singh- Village Gadriwal (Firozpur) Navchaitan Singh- Villgae Meham Sarja (Bathinda) Sukhraj Singh Lali- Village Nathana (Bathinda) Gurcharan Singh- Village Tungwali (Bathinda) Angrej Singh- Village Salabatpura (Bathinda) Jaswinder Singh-Village-Mahla Bhloor (Moga) Tajinder Singh- Village Kothe Dehati, Jaitu (Faridkot) All the findings are quite interested but horrible. Six out of the seven complained […]

Bayer Settles With Farmers Over Modified Rice Seeds

A Bayer AG unit will pay $750 million to settle claims with about 11,000 United States farmers who said a strain of the company’s genetically modified rice tainted crops and ruined their export value. Add to Portfolio The settlement, announced on Friday, ends scores of lawsuits filed against the Bayer CropScience unit of the company by farmers in Texas, Louisiana, Missouri, Arkansas and Mississippi. The Agriculture Department said in August 2006 that trace amounts of the company’s experimental LibertyLink strain were found in long-grain rice. Within four days, declining rice futures cost growers about $150 million, according to a complaint filed by the farmers. News of the contamination caused futures […]

Scientist bends rules for wife’s GM trial

Nitin SethiNitin Sethi, TNN | Jul 2, 2011, 12.28am IST NEW DELHI: In a clear case of conflict of interest in clearing GM crop trials, a member of the environment ministry’s statutory appraisal body and senior agriculture ministry scientist Swapan Kumar Datta has pushed and got clearance for trials of GM rice to be conducted by his wife, Karabi Datta, faculty with the botany department of Calcutta University in which he too will be participating. Environment ministry’s statutory Genetic Engineering Appraisal Committee (GEAC) at first cleared the trials for GM rice with the Supreme Court mandated condition that the isolation distance of 200 metres must be maintained during experiments. This […]

PTTC working on transgenic variety of groundnut

PTTC working on transgenic variety of groundnut PTI | 10:06 PM,Jun 27,2011 Hyderabad, Jun 27 (PTI) City-based Platform for Translational Research on Transgenic Crops (PTTC) is working on the first ever transgenic variety of groundnut that would be drought as well as heat resistant. PTTC, an initiative of the International Crops Research Institute for Semi Arid Tropics (ICRISAT) will make available this variety for trials in the next 4-5 years, Dr Sharma, Director of PTTC said. He said this while addressing a press conference here today, on the sidelines of 20th Asian Media Information and Communication Centre (AMIC). Sharma said that even though efforts are on to create genetically improved […]

The Monsanto/Bill Gates Plot: Genetically Engineered Rice Threatens Asian Countries

The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation has approved $20 million in new monies toward the development of “golden rice” — an untested, highly controversial GE (genetically engineered) crop that threatens biodiversity and risks bringing economic and ecological disaster to Asia’s farms. The leader of the Golden Rice project is Gerald Barry, previously director of research at Monsanto. Sarojeni V. Rengam, executive director of Pesticide Action Network Asia and the Pacific (PAN AP), has called the rice a “Trojan horse.” According to Rengam, the rice is “… a public relations stunt pulled by the agri-business corporations to garner acceptance of GE crops and food. The whole idea of GE seeds is […]

The cost-effective way to feed the world

MARGARET MELLON AND DOUG GURIAN-SHERMAN By 2050, the world will have to feed 9 billion people, adapt to climate change, reduce agricultural pollution, and protect fresh water supplies – all at the same time. Given that formidable challenge, what are the quickest, most cost-effective ways to develop more productive, drought-, flood- and pest-resistant crops? Some will claim that genetically engineered (GE) crops are the solution. But when compared side-by-side, classical plant breeding bests genetic engineering. Coupled with ecologically based management methods that reduce the environmental harm of crop production, classical breeding could go a long way toward producing the food we will need by mid-century. Producing better crops faster certainly […]

Response to the Stakeholders workshop on GM foods organised by Asia Pacific Consortium on Agricultural Biotechnology and TAAS on 19th May in New Delhi

Dear Colleagues, This is in response to the attached 6-page report of a one-day (on 19 May 2011) meeting titled “Stakeholders’ Interface on GM Food Crops” at IARI, New Delhi. The meeting was organized by Asia-Pacific Consortium on Agricultural Biotechnology (APCoAB) and Trust for Advancement of Agricultural Sciences (TAAS). APCoAB is a program of the Asia-Pacific Association of Agricultural Research Institutions (APAARI) whose Executive Secretary at present is Dr R.S. Paroda (and he has held this important position for about 13 years). TAAS is a New Delhi based trust whose founder Chairman is also Dr R.S. Paroda. The names of seven reputed scientists that are mentioned in the attached report […]

Bt gene harms GM plant: New answers to old questions on biosafety of GM crops

Author(s): G V RAMANJANEYULU Issue: Jun 30, 2011 http://www.downtoearth.org.in/content/bt-gene-harms-gm-plant G V Ramanjaneyulu Entomopathogenic bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) and its toxins have been extensively used for pest control in agriculture and forestry and in public health programmes since the 1930s. At the core of such application are protein crystals that get synthesised when Bt cells develop spores. The proteins called Cry (from Crystal) are inimical to certain insect groups. Transgenic plants containing Bt genes, commercially available since the 1990s, are developed by transferring genes to produce specific Cry proteins like CryIAc and Cry2AB. It is presumed the genes perform the same function of producing the toxin in the plant as they […]

Bayer’s GM rice defeat

Nature Biotechnology, 29, 473 (2011) In a lawsuit over genetically modified (GM) modified rice, jury members in an Arkansas circuit court ruled in March in favor of Riceland Foods of Stuttgart, Arkansas, a rice milling and exporting company, and against Bayer CropScience of Research Triangle Park, North Carolina, and Monheim, Germany. The jury recommended that Bayer pay Riceland $136.8 million—$125 million in punitive damages and $11.8 million in compensatory damages—calling Bayer negligent for allowing traces of its genetically engineered Liberty Link, herbicide-tolerant experimental rice to mix with commercial lots of long grain rice in 2006. Back then, Mike Johans, then secretary of the US Department of Agriculture, said: “There are no human […]

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