Environment NEWS

Genetically modified food




3 December 2000

MPs 'astonished' by hushed-up GM sites

By Geoffrey Lean, Environment Editor

GM crop sites are still being kept secret, despite repeated government assurances of increased openness.

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21 November 2000

With a GM chip on your shoulder

By Matt Warren

So, the chips are down. Following revelations over the weekend that own-brand tortilla chips sold in four leading supermarkets contained genetically modified maize...

20 November 2000

McDonald's bans use of meat from GM-fed animals

By Cahal Milmo

McDonald's, the fast food chain, announced yesterday that it was phasing out the use of meat fed on genetically modified feed.

6 November 2000

GM maize is found in tortilla snacks

By Nick Allen

Four leading supermarkets launched investigations today after tests commissioned by Friends of the Earth detected banned genetically modified maize in the stores' own-brand tortilla chips.

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1 November 2000

Shortfall a setback to GM crop testing

By John Vidal

The likelihood of British farmers growing GM crops commercially in the near future receded last night after it emerged that the variety which is top of the list has not been tested to EU standards.

1 November 2000

New GM blunder over maize

Tony Blair's GM nightmare continued last night after an embarrassing new climbdown by ministers.

19 October 2000

Inquiry warned over milk from GM-fed cows

By Charles Arthur, Technology Editor

A scientist giving evidence at a public inquiry into a genetically modified (GM) maize intended for animals has said he would not drink the milk of cows fed on it.

8 October 2000

Revealed: secret GM crop trials

By Geoffery Lean, Environment Editor

Top Secret trials of GM crops are under way in five British counties despite repeated government promises that it would never allow them to take place.

20 September 2000

Greenpeace director cleared of criminal damage charge

By Gareth Crickmer

Twenty eight Greenpeace supporters, including its executive director Lord Melchett, have been cleared of causing criminal damage to a field of genetically-modified maize.

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7 September 2000

Princess calls for open mind on GM

By Roger Highfield, David Derbyshire and Robert Uhlig

The House of Windsor was still divided over scientific issues yesterday after the Princess Royal called for an open mind on genetically modified foods and therapeutic cloning. She also backed the use of GM animals in research.

25 August 2000

GM crops cost US farmers £700m in lost exports

By John Ingham

British farmers will be warned today that GM crops will become an albatross round their necks.

24 July 2000

Blair stands by Clinton in defence of GM food

By Andy McSmith and George Jones

Tony Blair stood side by side with Bill Clinton yesterday as the US President accused Europe of being too cautious about experiments in biotechnology and genetically modified foods.

19 July 2000

Firm airs fears over bid to halt spread of GM seeds

By Severin Carrell

The seed company at the centre of the GM-contaminated crops scandal, Advanta, has raised serious doubts aboutattempts to stop genetically modified seeds from contaminating the environment.

12 July 2000

GM food 'can feed hungry millions'

By David Derbyshire, Science Correspondent

Some of the world's leading scientists launched a campaign supporting genetically modified food yesterday with a report outlining how the research could help feed the world.

20 June 2000

Study into GM food opens

By David Brown, Agriculture Editor

Possible health risks caused by genetically modified food will be investigated by the Food Standards Agency.

18 June 2000

Rejected GM food dumped on the poor

By Geoffrey Lean, Environment Correspondent

Hundreds of thousands of tons of genetically modified food, rejected by European consumers, are being dispatched to the world's poorest people, The Independent on Sunday can reveal.

15 June 2000

Supermarket launches price war on organic food

By Michael McCarthy, Environment Correspondent

The supermarket chain Iceland gave Britain's organic food industry a huge boost yesterday when it announced it was to convert all own-label frozen vegetable lines to organic, and sell them at the same price as conventional produce.

14 June 2000

Meacher admits GM pollen could spread anywhere

By Sarah Schaefer, Political Reporter

The Government admitted for the first time yesterday that genetically modified farm crops could contaminate normal crops no matter how far apart they are.

12 June 2000

Whitehall adviser attacks Charles

By Roger Highfield, Science Editor

The Government's chief scientific adviser has joined attacks on the Prince of Wales over his views on genetically modified food and the role of science, describing him as "ill advised".

7 June 2000

GM crops have adverse effect on Royal Family

By Michael McCarthy, Environment Correspondent

The House of Windsor appears to be divided over the issue of genetic modification after the Duke of Edinburgh mounted a strong defence of GM organisms .

6 June 2000

GM body will voice consumer concerns

By Paul Waugh, Political Correspondent

The Government made a fresh attempt to calm public fears over GM crops and foods yesterday when it unveiled a new independent body that will give advice to ministers on the technology.

6 June 2000

GM crop commission launched

By David Brown, Agriculture Editor

The head of a new advisory body on genetically modified crops launched by the Government yesterday promised that it would be the "voice of the people" on the issue.

5 June 2000

Princess Anne 'wrong' to back GM food

Environmental campaigners criticised the Princess Royal yesterday after she spoke in favour of genetically modified foods.

4 June 2000

Princess Royal says GM critics are wrong

By David Harrison and Ian Cobain

The Princess Royal has come out in favour of genetically modified foods, setting herself up in conflict with the Prince of Wales who recently said that they could bring "disastrous consequences.

31 may 2000

No market for the GM tomato that fights cancer

By Steve Connor, Science Editor

Scientists have developed a genetically modified tomato rich in anti-cancer nutrients but they admit it has no market in today's anti-GM climate.

29 May 2000

Firms move to avoid risk of contamination

Some of the world's biggest seed companies are moving their operations to countries free of genetically modified production to reduce the risk of contamination, it emerged yesterday.

21 May 2000

Commons misled over GM bungle

By Geoffrey Lean, Environment Correspondent

Ministers kept the accidental planting of GM crops across Britain secret even from their own advisers, the Independent on Sunday has learnt.

19 May 2000

Save the world: plant GM crops

By Minette Marrin

Minette Marrin argues that tinkering with nature has freed us from peasant labour, famine and disease - evils from which mankind has begged the gods for deliverance.

18 May 2000

Gulp! GM food is for you

By Steve Connor

If Sir Walter Raleigh were alive today it is unlikely that his proposal to introduce a doubtful-looking vegetable tuber from South America would ever get approval from the many food committees that today safeguard the British diet.

18 May 2000

Scientists condemn Prince's 'woolly' lecture on GM food (2)

Daniel Johnson thinks that believers and rationalists should stop squabbling and be allies, not opponents.

18 May 2000

Scientists condemn Prince's 'woolly' lecture on GM food

By Charles Clover, Environment Editor

The Prince of Wales's attack on scientists for tampering with nature in his Reith lecture on BBC Radio last night drew praise from environmentalists, but hostility from scientists.

14 April 2000

Pollen 'could contaminate GM-free food'

By Charles Clover, Environment Editor

The chairman of Iceland, the supermarket chain, told a court yesterday that it was almost "biologically impossible" for products to be completely free of genetically modified material.

11 April 2000

GM fish fail to hook Scottish salmon farmers

By Michael McCarthy, Environment Correspondent

Genetically modified salmon, which can grow six times as fast as normal fish and cost half as much to feed, will not be grown in Britain despite the economic benefits they offer, Scotland's salmon farmers pledged yesterday.

10 April 2000

Cancer expert says GM crops can be healthier

By Steve Connor, Science Editor

One of Britain's leading geneticists has attacked Lord Melchett, executive director of Greenpeace, for demanding absolute proof that genetically modified (GM) crops are safe.

29 March 2000

America finds ready market for GM food, the hungry

By Declan Walsh

Embattled American farmers facing rejection of their genetically modified crops still have one unquestioning market, emergency aid for the world's starving and displaced.

23 March 2000

Prince's GM 'superstition' attacked by Nobel winner

By Richard Eden

The Nobel prize winning scientist James Watson criticised the Prince of Wales yesterday over his opposition to GM technology. The scientist, who discovered the structure of DNA, accused the Prince of "pandering to superstition" and siding with "Left-wing agitators".

18 March 2000

GM crops to be grown in commercial tests

By David Brown, Agriculture Editor

Genetically modified crops are for the first time to be grown in commercial quantities at 31 sites in Britain, the Government announced yesterday

15 March 2000

New bishop backs GM trials

The bishop of one of the Church of England's most rural dioceses said that he was in favour of genetically modified crop trials, within hours of his appointment yesterday.

13 March 2000

Hostility to GM food may cause new brain drain

By Steve Connor, Science Editor

Public hostility to genetically modified food and other areas of scientific endeavour may drive industrial investment overseas and cause a new brain drain, according to a report by a House of Lords committee.

5 March 2000

Exposed: Blair's hypocrisy over GM

By Geoffrey Lean, Environment Correspondent

The Government is making little effort to check the safety of genetically modified food and crops despite Tony Blair's admission last weekend that they could damage human health and the environment.

1 March 2000

World watchdog for GM science 'is needed now'

By Charles Clover, Environment Editor

A new international body should oversee the genetic engineering revolution to ensure that it benefits the public as well as business, Tony Blair's chief scientific adviser said yesterday.

29 February 2000

US 'covered up warnings from its scientists on dangers of GM foods'

By Jack O'Sullivan, Scotland Correspondent

Tony Blair's fresh scepticism about GM foods was bolstered yesterday by claims that the US Government has covered up the safety fears of its own scientists.

28 February 2000

Blair faces attack over GM health risk comments

By Fran Abrams, Westminster Correspondent

Tony Blair will be at the centre of a new storm over GM foods this week as scientists protest against a claim by the Prime Minister that the products could be harmful to human health.

28 February 2000

Blair admits GM crops and food pose health risk

By George Jones, Political Editor

Tony Blair yesterday acknowledged that genetically modified crops and foods were potentially damaging to human health and the environment.

27 February 2000

The key to GM is its potential, both for harm and good

By Tony Blair

Four hundred experts are flying into Britain this weekend for the first ever global conference on genetically modified food and human health. It's an important event because it will be the first time that so many scientists, and with so many different views, meet to discuss this issue of real public concern.

27 February 2000

Blair: GM may be a health risk

By Geoffrey Lean, Environment correspondent

Tony Blair today admits that genetically modified foods may damage human health – almost exactly a year after he said he was so confident of their safety that he ate them himself.

26 February 2000

Greenpeace activists try to stop GM soya ship docking

By Charles Clover, Environment Editor

A 60,000-ton ship carrying genetically modified Soya was stopped yesterday by Greenpeace activists protesting at the legal import of GM crops into Britain.

25 February 2000

Greenpeace intercepts ship carrying GM crop

By Amanda Brown, Environment Correspondent, PA News

A ship thought to be carrying up to 60,000 tonnes of genetically modified soya into Britain was today intercepted by Greenpeace.

20 February 2000

Ministers to promote genetic engineering

By David Cracknell, Political Correspondent

A leaked Government document shows that ministers are intent on promoting the "benefits" of genetically-modified food and genetic engineering to the public.

15 February 2000

Big US firms face investors' revolt over GM foods

By Mary Dejevsky in Washington

More than a dozen United States corporations, including such household names as McDonald's, Coca-Cola, Heinz and Safeway, are facing a revolt from shareholders concerned about policy on genetically modified (GM) food.

6 February 2000

Exposed: the great organic food rip-off

By Cole Moreton and Emma Lindley

Supermarkets are taking advantage of the huge demand for organic food by charging grossly inflated prices, according to the most extensive survey of its kind to date.

30 January 2000

GM import ban breakthrough

By Geoffrey Lean

Nations will for the first time be able to ban imports of genetically modified seeds and crops, after a last-minute breakthrough in international talks yesterday.

30 January 2000

Summit agrees to block rogue GM crops as US drops its opposition

By David Harrison, Environment Correspondent

The position from the United States to adopt a protocol giving governments the right to block GM crop imports if there is "reasonable doubt" that they could endanger public health or the environment. Previously imports could only be blocked if there was concrete scientific evidence that GM crops used in food production could be dangerous.

23 January 2000

Secret deal will bring a flood of GM food

By Jonathon Carr-Brown, Jo Dillon and Geoffrey Lean

Leading European Union officials are trying to broker a secret deal which could result in Britain being flooded with imported GM foods.

8 January 2000

How supermarket sowed seeds of a PR disaster

In what seemed to be a PR coup in the war between the supermarkets, the giant Tesco said it would instruct its farmers not to grow any normal crops on fields previously used for tests of genetically modified (GM) plants.

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