Cancer link to GE corn queried
Thu, 20 Sep 2012 2:11p.m.
International scientists are questioning the validity of research linking cancer to genetically modified corn which the Greens say must lead to it being banned in New Zealand.
The Greens have demanded products that have the corn in it be withdrawn after a study by French scientists claimed rats that ate the corn treated with a herbicide were more likely to develop tumours.
The study, led by researchers at the University of Caen, found that female rats that ate the Roundup-tolerant NK603 corn were two to three times more likely to die than those in the control group.
"We now know that eating this corn, called NK603, causes tumours and we can't be sure that any products containing these GE foods currently out there being eaten by New Zealanders are safe either," Greens' GE spokesman Steffan Browning said.
"FSANZ (Food Standards Australia New Zealand) must immediately recall any products that have this strain of GE corn as an ingredient and reassess all previous approvals for long term eating safety."
The French government has asked its health watchdog to look into the claims.
But other scientists have treated the research with scepticism, questioning its veracity.
"In my opinion, the methods, stats and reporting of results are all well below the standard I would expect in a rigorous study - to be honest I am surprised it was accepted for publication,” said Cambridge University's Professor David Spiegelhalter.
Others questioned the lack of data presented in the report, published in the Food and Chemical Toxicology journal, which they said cast doubt on its findings.
"If the effects are as big as claimed, why have none of the previous 100+ plus studies by reputable scientists, in refereed journals, noticed anything at all?" the University of Adelaide's Professor Mark Tester said.
In 2002, the former Australia New Zealand Food Authority said there were "no public health and safety concerns" associated with NK603 corn.
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21/09/2012 9:39:31 a.m.
We must ban all GE andGM seed entering our country - end of story!
21/09/2012 8:46:55 a.m.
GE and GM has done nothing but destroy farms in america, ruined farmers lives and families and ruined perfectly good crops. and the companies behind this dont even care, they knowningly do what they do to gain all it is they want, MONEY! Time for this childish greedy take on the economy to end. Its not about gaining wealth its about our entire society have an economy to use, period. anything else will render it usless and we will pay the price. WHAT A JOKE mankind has become!
21/09/2012 7:04:09 a.m.
It is better to be safe than sorry.
When will get to see a list of these foods that are contaminated with this GM Corn? When will we see all foods labelled as to whether they are contaminated with GM food products? As consumers it should be our right to know - and to choose - what goes into our own bodies.
Come on National - you're all about *responsibility* and *social obligations*. How about giving us, the people, the responsibility of choosing what we do or don't eat. What we feed our children.
How about putting the responsibility - the social obligation - onto the food marketeers to inform the people of what exactly goes into the *food* they are trying to pawn off on us. Or would people's choice over their own health and safety cut into profit margins? Is corporate profit the only measure you hold sacrosanct?
20/09/2012 9:27:42 p.m.
Good to see NZ Media doing there job, first time seen in western media reports so far.
20/09/2012 8:09:48 p.m.
Simple, grow your own.
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