News

31.05.2022 |

Food experts slam the BBC for 'lies' about genetic edited foods

THE BBC and other media have been accused of “repeating uncritically and ad nauseam” UK Government “lies” about genetically edited foods.

The news comes after the Tories in Westminster asked the devolved ­nations to renege on established ­policy and allow gene-edited crops to be grown in their territories in order to align themselves with upcoming rule changes in England.

The Conservatives have claimed that genetically edited food differs from genetically modified food – both of which are classified together under EU law – as it does not involve the insertion of foreign genes.

29.05.2022 |

Episode 4: Dr Michael Antoniou about the impact of genetic modification, gene editing and pesticides

Dr Michael explains how gene editing fits into the complex spectrum of genetic modification, and how consumers may unwittingly find themselves no longer able to avoid GM products, as government regulation eases.

With his team, he has also pioneered research into the impact of glyphosate, the globally used herbicide also known as Roundup, with shocking impacts on mammalian health.

23.05.2022 |

The series of 10 webinars: H, as in “holistic”

25.05.2022

5:30-6:45 p.m. CET

This webinar is the eighth episode of the series of ten The Alphabet of Complexity webinars. The letter H (as in “holistic”) will guide us through the main question of the day: What factors should be taken into consideration in the battles to reclaim power over food systems in 2022?

The key speakers of this webinar are Christine von Weizsäcker, Benedikt Haerlin and Nina Holland.

12.05.2022 |

UK Government proposed gene editing / modification deregulation for plants, crops and animals

The Wrong Answer to the Wrong Question

We are extremely disappointed that the Government is pushing ahead with proposals to allow unregulated genetic modification of plants, including food crops, in England – and with hopes to do the same for animals.

In light of the climate and nature crisis and ongoing global instability, we urgently need a different land use and food production model. One which takes an agroecological approach that works with nature. The right question to ask right now is what research and development do we need to prioritise for this. The government hasn’t asked this. It hasn’t even responded to the National Food Strategy or announced a much-needed Food Bill, which should be top priority

12.05.2022 |

New GMOs and pesticides reduction: fast-track to failure

Reducing pesticide use by 50% by 2030 is a central goal of the EU Farm to Fork strategy, which aim to improve the sustainability of the food and farming systems and reverse environmental degradation. The European Commission claims that new genetically modified (GM) plants can help achieve that and is moving ahead with plans to deregulate this new generation of GMOs.

This briefing examines the history of first-generation, currently grown GM crops, as well as the new GM crops that are commercialised and in the pipeline. Based on the evidence, new GM crops will not reduce pesticide use. Some are even designed to increase it.

Pursuing false GM promises for pesticide reduction distracts from proven approaches. This briefing provides an overview of system-based solutions to effectively achieve pesticide reduction goals.

01.05.2022 |

THE ALPHABET OF COMPLEXITY

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28.04.2022 |

Federal ministers urged to reject proposals to remove government safety checks of some GMOs as new polling confirms most Canadians want public regulation

The Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN) is renewing its call for the federal Ministers of Health and of Agriculture and Agri-Food, Jean-Yves Duclos and Marie-Claude Bibeau, to reject proposals to remove government oversight of some genetically engineered (genetically modified or GM) foods and seeds, as new polling data confirms most Canadians want independent government regulation of genetically modified organisms (GMOs). CBAN, a coalition of 15 environmental, farmer and social justice groups, also released a report “New Proposals Would Eliminate Transparency on GMOs in Canada” that describes how the changes would also remove the ability of the federal government to get information about these unregulated GMOs for Canadians, if the Ministers accept the proposals from Health Canada and the Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA).

25.04.2022 |

World Malaria Day 2022: What risks are we willing to take to (maybe) end malaria?

While this disease affects one third of the world’s population, some scientists suggest that a new technology called gene drive could be a game-changer.

Gene Drives – manipulating the DNA of mosquitoes to pass down an extinction gene

The research consortium Target Malaria, mostly funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Open Philanthropy Fund, is developing genetically engineered mosquitoes in the lab that would either make all offspring male or all female offspring infertile. They use the Crispr-Cas methodology to implant a system into their DNA that would replicate when mosquitoes mate, ensuring that this gene spreads throughout the wild mosquito population. But while some hope that this would be the magic bullet to suppress mosquitoe populations and stop the malaria transmission cycle, this currently unproven high risk technology poses fundamental questions for humanity: How far are we willing to go, how high can the risks and uncertainties be in order to test a hypothesis?

The Risks of Gene Drive mosquitoes

22.04.2022 |

Webinar: The Alphabet of Complexity: B, as in “biodiversity”

The Alphabet of Complexity
The Alphabet of Complexity

Sa. 23. Apr. 5:30pm - 6:45pm (CEST)

This webinar is our second meeting within the series of ten The Alphabet of Complexity webinars. The letter B (as in “biodiversity”) will guide us through the main question of the day: How do plants and ecosystems naturally adapt and how do agroecology practitioners use this phenomenon?

The key speakers of this webinar are Salvatore Ceccarelli, Annika Michelson.

14.04.2022 |

EU Commission: political statements instead of scientific evidence

New letter reveals impact of trade interests and CETA

14 April 2022 / In a letter written in April 2022, the EU Commission states that CRISPR/Cas applications do not create any new or specific risks due to unintended effects. This letter came in response to a joint letter sent by the German Union of Peasant Farmers (AbL) and Testbiotech. In their letter, Testbiotech and the AbL argued that the statement made by the Commission is not based on scientific facts and is largely driven by trade interests, such as those included in the CETA free trade agreement (The Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement) between the EU and Canada.

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