Sri Lanka Bans GM Foods
|February 17, 2003||Posted by Staff under Progress Report, The Progress Report|
Pro-USA Corporations Embarrassed as Sri Lanka Bans GM Foods
Genetically Modified Foods Banned as Unsafe
Most countries concerned about the safety of their citizens have required that genetically modified foods be labelled — the USA does not offer this protection. Now Sri Lanka has raised the stakes by banning GM foods outright. This new level of safety has angered corporate monopolists and their government hirelings in the USA. Here are some excerpts from recent news reports on this topic.
Soya beans and all products that contain its derivatives including soya milk, soy sauce and soya flour are banned as of May 1 under the Health Ministry’s decision to ban all Genetically Modified Foods (GMF) in the country, Health and Indigenous Minister John Seneviratne said. Foods must be certified as GM-free before they will be allowed.
The Minister said several other imported food items produced using this technology will also be banned until produced without GM ingredients. This includes imported tomatoes and tomato based food products (ketchup, sauce, puree), corn (maize), corn flour (maize flour), cheese, potatoes and products containing potatoes, bakers and brewers yeast, beet sugar, microbiological starter cultures used in foods (like yoghurt cultures).
Weyland Beeghly, the agricultural counsellor for India, Sri Lanka and Bangladesh, admitted “There is a view in some circles that this is a very risky technology and that the US is testing it on the poor populations of developing countries.”
The new law introduced by the health ministry bans all imports of raw and processed food in 21 categories if they have been genetically modified.
“If the importer cannot get the certificate because the food is GM, then he has to change the source of his product,” Ceylon Chamber of Commerce spokesman Stanley Jayawardena said.
Opposition to these foods is growing among scientists and consumers and it is also predicted that irreparable harm could be caused to the environment and traditional agriculture due to the introduction of untested genes.
Children should not be subjected to risky, untested foods. We applaud Sri Lanka’s scientific move. What’s your view on all this? Share your opinions with others at The Progress Report!