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EU countries are allowed to ban all GM Crops
By Jerry Brownstein
Scotland and Germany have become the first countries to use a new EU directive that allows them to completely ban genetically modified (GM or GMO) crops within their borders. Under the old rules the EU decided which GM crops would be formally authorised to be cultivated in the entire EU geographical area. This new directive, which came into force earlier this year, gives each Member State the right to restrict or ban the cultivation of genetically modified foods within their own territory.
Scotland was the first region to take advantage of this rule. They were soon followed by Germany, and many other EU countries are expected to follow suit including Latvia and Greece. The Scottish Cabinet Secretary said, “Scotland is known around the world for our beautiful natural environment – and banning genetically modified crops will protect and further enhance our clean, green status.” He went on to say, “The Scottish Government has long-standing concerns about GM crops – concerns that are shared by other European countries and consumers, which is why we strongly support the continued application of the precautionary principle in relation to GM crops.”
The ‘precautionary principle’ basically means that if an action or policy has a suspected risk of causing harm to the public or the environment, then the burden of proof that it is not harmful falls on those taking an action. In other words, Monsanto and the other makers of GMOs must prove that their products are not harmful - and this has never been done because it would require long-term human studies. Environmentally conscious people feel that until there is real proof of the safety of these products that manipulate genes, those who consume them are playing Russian Roulette with their health.