EU study finally published: Co-existence of GE/non-GE farming

After Greenpeace makes the report public

Feature story - 22 May, 2002
After a long delay, the European Commission finally published the full text of a report on the co-existence of GE and non-GE crops in the European Union today.

Fields of genetically engineered soyabeans.

On May 16th, Greenpeace made public parts of the report that the Commission had tried to keep secret since it was delivered by the Institute for Prospective Technological Studies of the EU Joint Research Centre in January 2002.

In a comment to the press that the EU Commission gave out together with the report this week they claimed that "there is nothing secret about the study referred to in the Greenpeace press release. The version published on their [the Greenpeace] web-site is a draft ..." However, this is simply not true. The letters that accompanied the study when it was delivered to the European Commission in January, and that were obtained by Greenpeace, clearly state that the study was presented in its "final version" at that time.

The study states that farmers who don't want to cultivate GMOs would face high additional, in some cases unsustainable, costs of production if genetically engineered (GE) crops were commercially grown on a large scale in Europe. The study predicts that the situation would become particularly critical for organic farming of oilseed rape as well as for intensive production of conventional maize.

Seed and crop purity from GE pollution, at a detection level of 0.1 percent, would be virtually impossible in most cases. This effectively means that all products and seeds of oilseed rape and maize would be contaminated with GE crops to a certain extent. Organic farming exempt of GMOs, as we know it today and as it is defined in the EU Regulations, will be doomed.

These findings confirm the need for "zero tolerance" for seed contamination, the standard demanded by Greenpeace and other organisations.

Sign a petition to Save our Seeds from genetic contamination.

Further information:

View the EU report