France has launched a move to restore a ban on genetically modified (GMO) maize annulled by its top court to prevent sowings this spring that could raise public outcry in a country strongly opposed to GMO crops.
A Senator of the ruling Socialist party submitted a draft law on Tuesday calling for the cultivation of any variety of genetically modified maize to be prohibited in the country.
France’s previous bans on GMO maize, which only applied to Monsanto’s MON 810, the sole GMO crop allowed for cultivation in the European Union, had all been overturned by the country’s highest administrative court as lacking sufficient scientific grounds.
The new measure would also apply to any strain adopted in the future, including the insect-resistant maize known as Pioneer 1507 developed jointly by DuPont and Dow Chemical , which could be approved by the EU later this year.
A German government spokesman said on Wednesday Berlin would abstain in an upcoming vote to approve cultivation of the 1507 maize.
The proposed French law could be voted by the Senate as soon as Feb. 17 before being passed to the lower house, a French farm ministry official said on Wednesday.
The implementation of the ban would be monitored by inspectors and GMO crops destroyed, the draft legislation says.
France, the EU’s largest grain producer, has argued the technology poses environmental risks, referring to studies by the European Food Safety Agency (EFSA).
Monsanto says its GMO maize is safe.
By banning GM maize cultivation France is being true to the science and putting public safety ahead of corporate profits. Increasing numbers of studies show evidence of harm from consumption of GM foods directly or through their associated pesticides. At best industry health risk assessment studies are too short, limited and inconclusive! Furthermore, figures clearly show that France outperforms the USA in GM maize yields and uses far lower amounts pesticides with their non-GM maize cultivation systems. So evidently there is nothing to gain by adopting these GM crops from whatever angle one looks at it; at best no better crop performance and one takes on a currently unquantifiable of unnecessary health risk.
In addition to the mentioned lack of improved yield and vast increases in pesticide use, we can add that much increased cost of the seed, which is irrefutable as well–if you don’t get improved yield, AND have to increase inputs (i.e. cost of herbicide and higher cost of seed) what on earth reason is there for any farmer to choose to grow these crops?
The USA doesn’t ever talk about GMOs. Probably more than half of the people have no idea what GMO means. They eat the poison right up and this makes big, fat and ugly, rat looking people everywhere. It’s really horrible. Too bad a man like Bove wouldn’t risk going to jail in this country. OH yea I forgot, jail in the USA could be a death sentence, of course no one will do what he did.