GeneWatch PR: Genetically modified winter oilseed rape - bad for the environment and bad for farmers.

For immediate release: Monday 21st March 2005

GeneWatch response to publication of final Farm Scale Evaluation results.

The final results of the Farm Scale Evaluations, published today, have shown that if GM herbicide tolerant spring oilseed rape were grown it would be detrimental to farmers and wildlife (1). The results show that broad-leaved weed numbers were reduced whereas grass weeds increased. Numbers of some bees and butterflies were also lower in the GM crop. Broad-leaved weeds are the most important plants for bird species.

GeneWatch Director, Dr. Sue Mayer said; "These results are another good reason to abandon all plans for growing GM oilseed rape in the UK. This crop is bad for wildlife and will inevitably cause contamination of non-GM crops and wild relatives. Following the previous Farm Scale Evaluation results, this is the final nail in the coffin for GM crops".

For further information:

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

Notes for Editors:

1. DA Bohan, CWH Boffey, DR Brooks, SJ Clark, AM Dewar, LG Firbank, AJ Haughton, C Hawes, MS Heard, MJ May, JL Osborne, JN Perry, P Rothery, DB Roy, RJ Scott, GR Squire, IP Woiwod and GT Champion. (2005) Effects on weed and invertebrate abundance and diversity of herbicide management in genetically modified herbicide-tolerant winter-sown oilseed rape. Proc. R. Soc. B, 272, 463–474

↑ Top