GeneWatch PR: Time for Government to act on public concerns and halt the commercialisation

For immediate release - Wednesday 24th September, 2003

GeneWatch UK response to the publication of the 'GM Nation?' report

The Government has made a commitment to respond to the results of the 'GM Nation?' public debate on GM crops and food, which are published today in a report by the debate?s steering board (1). GeneWatch believes that unless the findings result in clear action, halting the imminent commercialisation of GM crops in the UK, the credibility of the Government will suffer a severe blow.

"The 'GM Nation?' debate has confirmed that the country is sceptical about GM food. The public believe it is being driven by profit and don't trust the Government to act fairly," said Dr Sue Mayer, GeneWatch UK's Director. "People see possible dangers for themselves and for the environment while industry reaps the benefits. The more people learn, the more anxious they become."

"If the Government ignores these findings, it will do so at its peril," warned Dr Mayer. "The public have identified uncertainties in the science, as did the Government?s own Science Review (2). And, like the PM?s Strategy Unit (3), they have questioned the economic benefit for the UK as a whole. To allow GM commercialisation to go ahead now would be a stab in the back for the public and raise questions about the Government?s real agenda."

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For further information contact:

Dr Sue Mayer on 01298 871898 (office) or 07930 308807 (mobile).

Notes to editors:

  1. The report of the 'GM Nation?' public debate is available on For more details about the debate see the special section on the GeneWatch web site:
  2. The findings of the GM Science Review are published on:
  3. "Field Work: Weighing up the Costs and Benefits of GM crops." Strategy Unit, July 11th 2003. See:

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