Tomorrow, Wednesday March 17, 5:30 Bill C-474 will be debated in the House of Commons. You can watch live at http://www.cpac.ca or follow http://www.cban.ca/474result for commentary and updates! Please continue to send your letters. Please see below today’s press releases.
PRESS RELEASE Ottawa. Tuesday, March 16, 2010
GE Crops: Parliament to debate the need for export market acceptance before commercial release
Tomorrow, Parliament will debate Private Members Bill C-474 to require
that “an analysis of potential harm to export markets be conducted
before the sale of any new genetically engineered seed is permitted.”
“The Bill is necessary to protect farmers from economic harm caused by
the release of GE seeds that are not approved in our export markets,”
said Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator of the Canadian Biotechnology Action
Network, a coalition of 17 groups.
The Bill was introduced by Alex Atamanenko, NDP Agriculture Critic and
MP for British Columbia Southern Interior. It will be debated on Wed.
March 17 at 5:30PM and if it passes this “second reading”, will be
studied by the House Agriculture Committee.
“As we see with the current flax contamination crisis, GE crops can
shut down our export markets,” said Sharratt, “Wishful thinking about
future approvals of GE crops in other countries or an end to zero-
tolerance for contamination in Europe is not going to change the
current reality in our export markets. There is an unceasing
controversy over GE crops in countries that represent valuable export
markets for Canadian crops.”
“The Bill finally begins a real debate over the negative economic
impacts of GE crops and the threat GE poses to Canada’s agriculture
sector into the future,” said Devlin Kuyek, also with CBAN, “Bill
C-474 would fill a gaping hole in Canada’s regulation that would allow
GE alfalfa or GE wheat onto the market despite the economic
devastation such crops would cause.”
“GE contamination is already costing the taxpayer,” said Sharratt.
“The fact that the Harper Government recently pledged up to $1.9
million to help companies pay for testing flax seed is evidence that
GE contamination can cost the Canadian government and this is
without the government compensating farmers for their testing costs or
market loss. Contamination is inevitable and these costs will keep
“We cannot allow our export markets to be damaged like this again,”
said Terry Boehm, President of the National Farmers Union and a flax
farmer, “It’s the government’s responsibility to protect Canadian
farmers from predictable trade problems caused by the introduction of
new GE crops that have not yet been regulated in our export markets.”
For more information: Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator, CBAN, 613 241 2267
ext.6 or cell 613 263 9511; Devlin Kuyek, CBAN, cell 514 571 7702;
Terry Boehm, National Farmers Union 306 255 2880