Planet Diversity World Congress on the Future of Food and Agriculture


02.08.2010 |

Green light for GM feed in Europe

EU opens the market for six genetically modified (GM) maize varieties to market to Europe’s livestock farmers. The approvals are valid for 10 years and cover imports for food and animal feed, but the maize is not authorised for cultivation in Europe.

02.08.2010 |

gmo potato
science amd monsanto (photo:the ecologist)-+-

Taxpayer´s money wasted on GM-research

Science does not serve public interest, but the success of GM technology. "PR strategy relies on seemingly independent scientists making empty promises about the future benefits of GM crops," said Helen Wallace, of GeneWatch UK. Critics claim the trial, the results of which are likely to be used to "sell" GM technology to the British public, is a waste of money because blight-resistant potatoes have already been produced through other techniques.

30.07.2010 |

Greenpeace activists quarantine illegal GE crops in Italy
Greenpeace activists quarantine illegal GE crops in Italy

Greenpeace has taken action today to prevent contamination from GM crops

Greenpeace identified the illegal Monsanto maize type, MON810 in northern Italy. Activists from Italy, Austria, Germany and Hungary intervened to prevent the spread of GM pollen. “For days these crops will have been contaminating not only neighbouring fields, but countryside further away as well, as insects and winds disseminate their pollen,” said Federica Ferrario, Greenpeace Italy Agriculture campaigner.

28.07.2010 |

Amflora threatening potato diversity

The agricultural minister in the German State of Mecklenburg Vorpommern (MV) called on Ilse Aigner the German agricultural Minister to urgently reconsider the cultivation of the gm-potato amflora. “The gm-potato endangers the only ‘healthy region’ for the production of seed potatoes because Amflora is characterized by a high risk of virus infestation” said Till Backhaus. Indeed MV and Scottland are the only remaining regions in Europe ensuring no virus transmission via lice. These healthy regions are essential for breeding and production of healthy seed potatoes and are threatened by susceptible to deceases.

27.07.2010 |

Syngenta in the race on water-optimized corn hybrids

Are GMOs the answer to climate change? Syngenta does believe so! "We are pleased to announce … the industry‘s first water-optimized corn technology, to help growers preserve yields ...." says David Morgan, president of Syngenta Seeds, Inc. Even so thousands of years of farmers breeding created numerous locally adapted varieties around the globe Mr Morgan claims to hold the one and only solution to drought stress on earth.

23.07.2010 |

Unauthorised release of GM event NK603 in Irish conventional maize seed

On 3rd June 2010, the Department of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (DAFF) informed the EPA of the unauthorised release of GM (genetically modified) event NK603 in conventional maize variety PR39T83. This release was subsequently confirmed by DAFF on 19th July 2010. The maize variety was supplied by Pioneer Hi-Bred Northern Europe and was in the process of being evaluated for cultivation and use under Irish farming conditions in DAFF small scale field trials.

16.07.2010 |

Patents on conventional plants and animals !

The European Patent Office will use a patent on broccoli (EP 1069819) for a fundamental ruling, on whether or not conventional plants are patentable. All other broccoli plants with similar genes are considered as "technical inventions" by the patent. Next week EPO will decide on the future of broccoli…

15.07.2010 |

Commission plans to relax rules on GM crops in Europe

European Commission allows their member states to go their own way regarding the cultivation of genetically modified (GM) crops. Their are being promised the right to ban GM cultivation. Or, indeed, to promote them! “We will not be using this as leverage in any way to get more positive decisions,” Mr Dalli said.

Read more about it…

14.06.2010 |

European Union allows Madeira to remain free of GMOs

The European Union has reportedly allowed Madeira, an autonomous region of Portugal located 500 kilometers from the African coast, to prohibit the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) on the archipelago. According to The New York Times, the European Commission "quietly" let the deadline pass for opposing the GMO ban, which Portuguese officials claimed was necessary to preserve Madeira's rare subtropical laurel forests, known as laurisilva.

"[T]he case of Madeira represents a significant landmark, because it is the first time the commission. has permitted a country to impose such a sweeping and definitive rejection of the technology," states the May 9, 2010,


In issuing its decision, the European Commission apparently circumvented the European Food Safety Authority and signaled "the unofficial beginning of a

new- and potentially highly contentious-policy that would give European nations and regions far greater freedom to decide when to ban such crops."

This policy seeks to grease the wheels of the GMO approval process by permitting countries and regions more latitude to set their own agricultural agendas. As EU Commissioner for Health and Consumer Affairs John Dalli was quoted as saying, the priority was to get experts, companies and activists to "understand and accept a process that they will not try to second-guess or try to attack once a decision not to their liking is taken."

11.05.2010 |

First suggestions for a new gene technology policy in the EU

In the future, EU Member States should be able to decide for themselves on the cultivation of genetically modified plants. By making changes to shared laws on gene technology, the EU Commission intends to overcome the political blockade that has been in place for years. In an internal strategy paper, the EU Commission presented the first suggestions for a new gene technology policy that already had been signalised by the Commission President Barroso prior to his re-election in August.


Local Organising Committee