Politics are winning at the expense of science in France and now the entire European Union faces a similar fate. On Tuesday 22 July 2014 nine “green” anti-GM organisations demanded that the incoming European Commission (EC) president abolish the position of Chief Scientific Officer, presently held by Professor Anne Glover.
We fear not only for the progress of agriculture, but for all scientific enterprise in Europe.
While the world’s key food safety and scientific authorities have judged genetically modified (GM) crops to be as safe as conventional varieties, anti-GM NGOs and green politicians remain obsessed with opposing them because they do not comply with their predetermined political agenda. We now fear that the Commission will collude with green organisations in the destruction of the European plant biotechnology industry altogether. Certainly these groups seem to be in the ascendant. As former UK Minister of the Environment, Owen Patterson, notes, “a staggering 150 million euros was paid to the top nine green NGOs from 2007-13”.
These recent events are highly troubling to the future of EU plant biotechnology and there seems, at present, little prospect of a return to a knowlege-based society as hoped for by the EC, many years ago.
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