are here: Home
>> Public warned against entry of genetically modified
Philippines Public warned against
entry of genetically modified rice by Danny Fajardo
30-April-2008 Manila Bulletin
BACOLOD CITY – A national organization
of farmers and scientists has warned the public on the possible
entry in the local market of generically-modified rice (GMO).
MASIPAG (Magsasaka at Siytentista Para sa Ikauunlad ng
Agham Pang-agrikultura) advocacy officer Ma. Veronica Promentilla
said that LLRICE62 and the US long rice are now seen in
prominent supermarkets in Manila.
According to Promentilla, LLRICE62, a product of BAYER,
is reportedly banned in the US. She said several independent
scientific studies on genetically-engineered rice or crop
revealed that GMOs are hazardous to the environment and
humans because they contain two genetically different materials.
She appealed to the government to actively monitor the
GMOs in the market.
"Unfortunately, we lack technical capability to detect
GMOs in imported agricultural crops," Promentilla said.
GMO promoters claimed that the same are safe and can increase
production. It reduces pesticides and can solve widespread
MASIPAG, on the other hand, countered the promoters’ claim
saying that GMO failed to prove the increase in agricultural
production and the cost of production is very high.
"It does not help alleviate poverty because they are
produced for the transnationals’ interests," she said,
adding that "crops are easily contaminated without
the farmers’ knowledge or consent."
She also pointed out that "farmers are not allowed
to save, exchange, sell or improve seeds because they are
patented, and genetically-engineered technologies create
dependency to transnational companies because they alone
have the license or patent on said technologies."
She said the GMO products, such as US long rice and LLRICE62,
were banned in the Philippines as environmental watchdog,
Greenpeace, was able to get a restraining order for the
distribution of such products.
SEARCA Biotechnology Information Center UPLB Campus 4031, Los Baños, Laguna, PHILIPPINES
Telephone +6349 536 2290 ext. 406 / 169 / 135
Fax +6349 536 4105
SEARCA BIC is one of the biotechnology information nodes of the International
Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications Global Knowledge
Center (ISAAA KC) and hosted by the Southeast Asian Regional Center
for Graduate Study and Research in Agriculture (SEARCA). It was officially
established in 2000 to address the needs of the region for a highly
credible, sound and factual biotechnology information center in the
Southeast Asian region accessible to various stakeholders.