Saturday, April 19, 2014
Russia Announces It Will Not Import GMO Products
Russia has embraced a GMO-free platform for many years and according to the official information there is no growing of GMOs in Russia for commercial purposes. The country’s Prime Minister Dmitry Medvedev has now officially announced that it will not import GMO products, adding that the nation has enough space and resources to produce organic food.
A decision last year by the Russians to suspended authorization for American GM corn threatening to trigger a transatlantic commercial and diplomatic row. The Russian Prime Minister then ordered the same agencies to consider a possible ban on all GMO imports into Russia.
A growing body of scientific research - done mostly in Europe, Russia, and other countries - showing that diets containing engineered corn or soya cause serious health problems in laboratory mice and rats.
Experts at the University of Caen conducted an experiment running for the full lives of rats - two years.
Moscow has no reason to encourage the production of genetically modified products or import them into the country, Medvedev told a congress of deputies from rural settlements.
“If the Americans like to eat GMO products, let them eat it then. We don’t need to do that; we have enough space and opportunities to produce organic food,” he said.
The prime minister said he ordered widespread monitoring of the agricultural sector. He added that despite rather strict restrictions, a certain amount of GMO products and seeds have made it to the Russian market.
Earlier, agriculture minister Nikolay Fyodorov also stated that Russia should remain free of genetically modified products.
There is currently no limitation on the trade or production of GMO-containing food in Russia. However, when the percentage of GMO exceeds 0.9 percent, the producer must label such goods and warn consumers. Last autumn, the government passed a resolution allowing the listing of genetically modified plants in the Unified State Register. The resolution will come into force in July.
The biotech industry and university researchers involved in GM research have mounted a major PR campaign over the last year to win over skeptical consumers. Pro-GM scientists have been lining up to undermine the experiments and criticise the way they were conducted.
However, a number of independent academics have praised several studies showing the toxicity of GMOs.
Natasha Longo has a master's degree in nutrition and is a certified fitness and nutritional counselor. She has consulted on public health policy and procurement in Canada, Australia, Spain, Ireland, England and Germany.