Tuesday, February 17, 2015

Zero tolerance policies on GMO “contamination” hurt organic and conventional farmers alike

Rebecca Randall | February 12, 2015 | Genetic Literacy Project

Prior to 2010, Steve Marsh and Michael Baxter were just friends and neighbors farming near Kojonup, Western Australia. But in 2010, Baxter decided to plant genetically modified canola. Marsh was an organic farmer. It wasn’t long before Marsh sued Baxter over cross pollination—what Marsh and the organic community of Australia claimed was the “contamination” of his crop.

The court rejected Marsh’s claims, asserting that Marsh was not victimized by Baxter but by the stringent rules set by the organic’s organization that he voluntarily agreed to.

If the two neighbors managed to farm side by side in the past, why shouldn’t Marsh’s organic farm be able to coexist with Baxter’s genetically modified crops? After all, gene flow occurs in all crops—whether genetically modified or not—and it’s not generally considered to be an issue unless the crop is being grown for seed and not consumption......To Read More....

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