South and East Belfast Sinn Féin -- Building an Ireland of Equals

Right of countries to ban GMOs

Published: 6 July, 2011

In the European Parliament today Bairbre de Brún MEP voted for individual countries rights to ban the cultivation of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs) in their territory.

de Brún said, "Today the Parliament voted to ensure that GMOs can be banned on the territory of individual member states on the basis of environmental and socio-economic criteria. Although I would have preferred to see a total ban, incorporating more criteria, such as health, this is certainly a step in the right direction

"As evidenced by official polls, EU citizens do not want GM crops, and Ireland's reputation for high-quality and sustainably-produced food should not be jeopardised by its potential inability to legally ban GM production on the island.'

"Questions remain around what would happen if one member state opts to cultivate GMOs and its neighbour doesn't. However I have no doubt this issue will be raised when the report comes before the European Council.

"It is imperative that Member States continue to have the right to shape their own legislation on issues as important as these, which are of huge importance to our environment and agriculture sectors."