INDEPENDENT NEWS

Kiwi Controls On Rogue GE Corn Still Inadequate

Published: Tue 20 Mar 2001 11:54 AM
Green Party Health Spokesperson Sue Kedgley today said that New Zealand was not doing anywhere near enough to keep an unapproved genetically engineered Starlink corn out of the country.
The Starlink corn, which is only approved for animal feed and is suspected of causing allergic reactions in humans such as skin rashes, runny noses and flu-like symptoms, has found its way into over 430 million bushels of stored corn in the US and has found its way into around 300 different foods.
"In November last year I called upon the Ministry of Health to introduce random testing of all foods containing corn which were imported from the United. Since then the scale of contamination has increased hugely and all we are doing is asking for assurances from the food importers," said Ms Kedgley.
"I cannot understand why, with the scale of this contamination, we are not introducing some form of random testing to guarantee that this corn is not entering the New Zealand food supply. Simply asking the importers is just not enough."
Ms Kedgley said around 300 food products were known to contain the corn but, as corn was a staple in a wide range of foods, New Zealand needed to be vigilant about all imported foods from the US containing corn.
"Random testing would send the signal to the US and to the people of New Zealand that we are not taking any risks with the foods on our shelves and that we view this huge contamination very seriously," she said.
Ends

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