National Association for Genetic Safety (NAGS): NGO behind “independent” Factor GMO study

Updated July 17, 2018 |
Print Friendly, PDF & Email
NAGS logo

National Association for Genetic Safety (NAGS)
Moscow, Russia


The National Association for Genetic Safety (NAGS) is the organizing organization behind the controversial “Factor GMO” study announced on November 11 in London. The organizers, who now claim no links to NAGS, say it will cost $25 million, and will be undertaken by “independent scientists”. Yet NAGS has a history of strident opposition to crop and animal biotechnology.

The Moscow-based NGO–known in Russian as the OAGB (Общенациональная Ассоциация Генетической Безопасности ОАГБ and also called the Genetic Safety Public Association–GSPA) was founded in 2004 ” to contribute the protection of biological and genetic safety of humankind and the environment, and to promote sustainable development ideas in human consciousness.” NAGS claims it has had a “great influence on the development of public debate concerning the safety of modern biotechnology, including GMOs, in Russia.” NAGS opposes GMOs and supports organic agriculture to protect the public health and safety.[1] NAGS claims GMOs are linked to cancer and increase the risk of Downs Syndrome and other health effects[2], although there are no independent studies that show this.


  • In 2008 NAGS in partnership with the Institute of Ecology and Evolution of A.N. Severtsov of Russian Academy of Sciences has conducted its own “independent” research on the impact of GMOs on the health of mammals. They alleged that during the experiments hamsters, which were fed with GM soybean meal, were unable to reproduce a third generation of offspring.
  • In 2012 NAGS launched a separate project — environmental initiative «Emerald Planet». Its mission is to promote and realize the ideology of sustainable development.
  • In 2012 NAGS claimed they would launch a global researcher study in March 2013 of GMOs which would be completely transparent with web-casting cameras installed to show the process. They claimed the study could cost up to US$1 million that they would raise from commercial sponsors and other donors. NAGS director Shroykina said “if the experiment does prove the destructive influence on animals, it should be the pretext to banning GMOs in Russia.”[3]
  • In 2013 NAGS announced the start of preparation for what they claimed would be the “first international long-term study on the influence of GMOs on animals’ health. The experiment will involve scientists from around the world.”[4]
  • In September 2014 NAGS led an open letter campaign to Russian prime minister Medvedev urging him to ban all GMOs.[5]
  • In November 2014 NAGS announced with GMO-Free Global (Henry Rowlands) they would be revealing the findings of a U.S. $25M study (apparently an evolution of the 2012 announced $1M study) in London on November 11 called “Factor GMO” or “GMO Factor” study.

Organization Details

NAGS website and other publications provide no financial or structure reporting.


NAGS vice president Irena Ermakova claims “Russians are threatened by GM genocide” and that GMOs are responsible for global climate change.[6]


Since 2004 NAGS has implemented the project «Public control of the grocery market». NAGS claims they conduct annual independent monitoring of food quality to defend interests of Russian consumers. NAGS experts allege they have found serious violations in foods from well-known Russian and foreign manufacturers: dangerous bacteria and microorganisms, unauthorized food additives, genetically modified organisms (GMOs) without labeling in baby food etc. Such violations they assert could cause serious health problems.


Images: File:Elena_Sharoykina.jpg

  • Elena Sharoykina, head of organization
  • Irena Ermakova, vice president
  • Nadya Newton, an associate of Jeffrey M. Smith a journalism and communications student administers the NAGS social media accounts and helped coordinated the Russian “March Against Monsanto”[7]


NAGS fundraising page urges donations to help stop “mass food poisonings, dangerous food additives, GMOs…” adding, “Today, no one is safe from buying substandard and unsafe food.” NAGS is a co-chair of the Global GMO Free Coalition led by Henry Rowlands which receives funding from John Fagan’s Earth Open Source.


The NAGS website “investigations” section links to claims by Marharish movement member and Institute for Responsible Technology founder Jeffrey M. Smith and Mae Wan Ho of ISIS.[8] The group also is a steering committee member of the GMO-Free Global coalition[9] headed by Henry Rowlands and funded by Maharishi Global Country for World Peace Raja for Food Purity and Health Invicibility [Fagan’s foundation Earth Open Source.[10]

They also cite “Project partner: Maksim Volkov” Project Partner: NGO “The Truth About Food” with Official website: true-to-ede.rf

Other affiliates include:





Outbreak Featured
Infographic: Growing human embryos — How long should researchers watch human development play out in a dish?

Infographic: Growing human embryos — How long should researchers watch human development play out in a dish?

In May, the International Society for Stem Cell Research (ISSCR) released new guidelines that relaxed the 14-day rule, taking away ...
Are GMOs and pesticides threatening bees?

Are GMOs and pesticides threatening bees?

First introduced in 1995, neonicotinoids ...
glp menu logo outlined

Newsletter Subscription

* indicates required
Email Lists
glp menu logo outlined

Get news on human & agricultural genetics and biotechnology delivered to your inbox.