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Holes evident in GM legislation

"Regulation of GM in this country is grossly inadequate and highlights why it is so important to maintain the moratorium on GM crops," said Australian Greens spokesperson Senator Rachel Siewert.

"There is no regulation in place to deal with the issues of contamination, segregation and marketing of GM and non-GM crops. This issue is about to come to a head with the overturning of the moratorium on GM canola by NSW and Victoria."

"The GM-free status of states such as WA is under threat by the decisions of NSW and Victoria, and there is no federal legislation to deal with this issue," said Senator Siewert.

"The NSW Government has said that 'strict labelling laws will be in place' – but questioning in Senate Estimates today revealed that NSW is not in a position to commit to this."

"Even if there was a national agreement to put in place labelling standards it would probably take 2 years to implement," she said.

"The Australian Greens do not support the lifting of the state moratorium on the planting of GM canola. It is quite clear that we do not have procedures in place to adequately protect the GM-free status of those states that don't want to go down the GM road."

"Lifting the ban threatens markets, and our labelling laws are not adequate to properly inform the community of GM content," she concluded.

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