Presentation on theme: "GREEN IRELAND. BRANDING FOR FARMING, FOOD AND ECO-TOURISM."— Presentation transcript:
GREEN IRELAND. BRANDING FOR FARMING, FOOD AND ECO-TOURISM.
Forging a GM policy for Ireland. KATE CARMODY. IRISH ORGANIC FARMERS AND GROWERS ASSOCIATION.
I’ll aim to cover The current policy vacuum on GM crops The work and views of IOFGA The key issues to consider The advantages to be gained by keeping Ireland GM-free.
Policy vacuum No major political party has a policy – things happening by default No evidence of consumer demand No strong evidence of lack of impact on the environment No thought about the future direction for Irish agriculture Need to respond to challenges of globalisation – high value added products Need to focus on sustainability in agriculture How does GM fit with this?
IOFGA We are Ireland’s largest organic certification body. We operate an inspection and certification scheme, approved by DAF and UKROFS. 1992 EU regulation 2092/91-crops. 2000 EU regulation 1804/99 – livestock.
OUR POSITION ON GM CROPS. They are prohibited, as are their derivatives. This is due to their incompatibility with organic principles, their un-recallable nature and risk to the environment and human health.
Key issues to consider Future of Irish Agriculture Changing consumer demand, greater concern about food production, greater concern about environmental impact, food and health, food miles Future of the Irish environment Green and clean and GMO free!
Evidence based decision making. The evidence base Lessons from medical science and issues to do with how to assess the risks of GM. The role of epigenetics ignored by the agricultural biotechnology industry. They still insist on using the dogma that one gene codes for one protein. Risk assessment based on substantial equivalence- a pseudo-scientific concept because it is a commercial and political judgement masquerading as if it were scientific. Coexistence of crops found to be impossible in countries already growing GM crops.
Conclusions. Latest research shows substantial health risks from GM food including allergic reactions and antibiotic resistance. The European consumer is willing to pay for value added products to ensure their health benefits. Irish Organic market is increasing by 10% annually.
Food for thought? You are what you eat? Let’s hope not, if it is GM.