Irish Organic Farmers and Growers Association
IOFGA (Irish Organic Farmers and Growers Association) is Ireland’s leading organic certification body dedicated to certifying organic produce and products throughout Ireland.
The decision by the Environmental Protection Agency on July 26th to grant approval for a trial of genetically modified potatoes was followed by extensive media coverage and IOFGA members gave a series of interviews on the subject to television and radio programmes.
The following is a press statement issued by the Irish Organic Farmers and Growers Association in response to the EPA’s decision to grant approval for a trial of GM potatoes.
Issue date: 27/7/2012
DISMAY AT THE EPA DECISION TO GRANT APPROVAL FOR GM POTATOES
The decision announced by the EPA to grant Teagasc a licence to grow GM potatoes in open fields in Carlow was received with dismay throughout the food community. “There is no demand for GM foods from consumers. By taking this irresponsible step, Teagasc have effectively ended our status as a GM free island” said Gillian Westbrook, General Manager, IOFGA.
“This decision carried with it serious ramifications for Irish food producers and will have serious repercussions for our export market. We cannot on the one hand be marketing our green image and on the other hand growing GM crops, European consumers will not be fooled by this duality. In the current economic climate the consequences will be felt by all food producers, organic and conventional” she continued. There are a variety of blight resistant potatoes available on the market for potato growers, this is where Teagasc should concentrate its resources not on GM potatoes that people do not want to eat.