CONTROVERSY ABOUT GM MUSTARD

  • Many scientist claim that at a time when sustainable farming and low-input agriculture are becoming the buzzwords, it is surprising that agricultural scientists continue to recommend crop varieties that will end up doing more harm to the environment and crop fields. GM mustard will require almost double the quantity of fertiliser and water.
  • Other Health concerns of GM Hybrid Mazie include: allergenicity; gene transfer, especially of antibiotic-resistant genes, from GM foods to cells or bacteria in the gastrointestinal tract; and `out crossing’, or the movement of genes from GM plants to conventional crops, posing indirect threats to food safety and security.
  • GM mustard can affect honeybees directly and indirectly through effecting flowering and pollen production. Protease inhibitors have proved detrimental to the longevity and behaviour of bees.
  • Regulatory weakness-The Genetic Engineering Approval Committee, which is responsible for approving large-scale releases and commercialisation of GMOs, functions under the Ministry of Environment and Forests and is not entirely independent.
  • The case of the Review Committee on Genetic Manipulation that supervises and clears research activities and also small-scale field trials is even starker. It is part of the Department of Biotechnology, whose primary task is to promote biotechnology. DBT therefore is the promoter as well as the regulator. On several occasions, developers of transgenic crops have also been members of regulatory committees