Saturday, June 20, 2009

Quotes on GM Crops and Technology and Technology - Taking a cue from top scientists and leaders

In this article I would like to share some of the views of eminent personalities and organizations on GM crops and technology. Surely, for the cream of the crop to accept this technology, it cannot be junk science. Let these views erase the horror stories of GM crops created by naysayers. Enjoy reading. 

"Research is international. Restrictions here in Germany do not prevent worldwide progress; they just shut German researchers and plant breeders out of the international competition." 

Prof. Christiane Nüsslein-Volhard

Nobel Laureate and Director of the Max Planck Institute for Developmental Biology, Tübingen.  

"It is paradoxical that field trials connected with biosafety research, of all things, are being destroyed and the scientists responsible are being publicly vilified." 
Prof. Mathias Kleiner
President of the DFG (German Research Foundation) 

"Shortages on the global markets are foreseeable, so we have a clear responsibility to use progress and innovation, and to promote research. Plant breeders rely on the whole range of tools, from classic breeding to crop biotechnology." 
Carl-Albrecht Bartmer
President of the DLG (German Agricultural Society) 

"Crop biotechnology is a complex science and the background cannot easily be explained to a broad public. In the public debate, objective, rational arguments are frequently countered with statements that are charged with emotions and designed to fuel fears."
Dr Arend Oetker
President of Stifterverband für die Deutsche Wissenschaft, Germany's science innovation agency 


"Refusing GM technology will hold back efforts to alleviate poverty and hunger, to save biodiversity and protect the environment."
Baron Marc Van Montagu
President of the European Federation of Biotechnology 

“The anti-GMO movement is an imperialism of rich tastes imposed on the poor." 
Robert Paarlberg
Wellesley College 

“The debate should not be whether to adopt biotechnology, but how to adopt it. African countries need to discuss issues of biosafety and intellectual property rights, which are the main points of contention”.
Margaret Karembu, Director of ISAAA AfriCentre 

“To solve the food problem, we have to rely on big science and technology measures, rely on biotechnology, rely on GM”

Premier Wen Jiabao
Chairman of the State Council/Cabinet of China 

“Using GM rice is the only way to meet the growing food demand”.

Dr. Dafang Huang
Former Director of the Biotechnology Research Institute of the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences (CAAS) 

“It is important to apply biotechnology in agriculture. What has been done in Bt cotton must be done with food grains”.

Dr. P. Chidambaram
India’s former Finance Minister

“Accelerate research and development and increase access to new agricultural technologies to boost agriculture production; we will promote science-based risk analysis, including on the contribution of seed varieties developed through biotechnology”.

G8 members meeting in Hokkaido in July 2008 

“GM crops can play an important role in mitigating the effects of the food crisis”.

The European Commission 

The World Health Organization (WHO), has emphasised the importance of GM crops because of their potential to benefit the public health sector by providing more nutritious food, decreasing its allergenic potential and also improving the efficiency of production systems. 

By Mahaletchumy Arujanan

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