Food labelling review fails to protect Aussie kids

Press release - 28 January, 2011
Today Parliamentary Secretary for Health, Catherine King, released the results of the Blewett review of Australia’s food labelling laws, in a press conference closed off to the public.

Neal Blewett has failed to close the loopholes in Australia's GM labelling laws that leave Australians eating in the dark when it comes to genetically modified food (GM).

"Big pharma and multinational chemical companies like Monsanto love the loopholes in Australia's GM labelling laws. If they claim the GM in their product got there by accident they don't have to label it," said Greenpeace GM campaigner, Laura Kelly.

"Quite frankly, Blewett blew it, and it's Australian kids that bear the health risk."

"Last year, independent testing commissioned by Greenpeace discovered unlabelled GM in infant formula. Pfizer, the makers of the formula, claimed that they didn't need to let Australian mums know they were feeding their babies GM, because 'it was an accident' that GM got into their formula."

"The Australian Government has caved in to the interests of big pharma by failing to close the 'oops, it was an accident' loophole in our GM labelling laws," said Ms. Kelly.

"The Blewett Review has sacrificed Australian parents' right to know if they are feeding their children GM that has never been proven safe to eat."

Independent news polls show 90% of Australian consumers want all GM in food labelled. Greenpeace co-ordinated a 'Parent's Right to Know' pledge in support of GM labelling endorsed by celebrity chefs, public health groups, community groups and politicians from all major parties. Signatories include Senator Nick Xenophon, the Public Health Association of Australia, Unions NSW and leading Australian chef, Peter Gilmore, of Quay restaurant.

VVPR info:

Greenpeace Media Officer, Elsa Evers 0438 204 041

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