The Swiss charity, Swissaid, is calling on the government to do more to promote organic products. It says public subsidies should be redirected away from research into genetically modified (GM) crops.This content was published on February 17, 2000 - 07:58
The Swiss charity, Swissaid, is calling on the government to do more to promote organic products. It says public subsidies should be redirected away from research into genetically modified (GM) crops.
At its annual press conference in Berne on Thursday, the non-governmental organisation urged parliament to endorse a ten-year moratorium on GM products saying that they did not provide a magic solution to the problem of world hunger.
Swissaid said many Third World scientists found it hard to resist the fame and money offered by research into GM plants. But it took heart from Swiss and European Union scepticism over the desirability of genetically modified organisms and said it was supporting Swiss organic farmers who wanted to launch a federal initiative to suspend proposed field studies of GM plants.
The charity said that the main problem developing countries were facing was hunger, caused by general poverty and distribution problems. Testing new GM plants would not necessarily be more economical and public acceptance was not guaranteed.
Swissaid is one of the smaller Swiss NGOs engaged in development work in the Third World. It is a non-denominational, politically neutral foundation that is this year supporting 99 development projects in three continents.
From staff and wires
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