Skip to comments.TRANSGENIC CROPS GREENPEACE DUMPS PAPAYAS AT MINISTRY
Posted on 08/27/2007 12:51:31 PM PDT by JimSEA
GM protest goes awry as passers-by grab fruit, run
Greenpeace's protest against the lifting of a ban on open-field trials of genetically-modified (GM) papaya yesterday was met with an unexpected reaction from a crowd of onlookers. Passers-by took matters, and tonnes of papayas dumped by Greenpeace, into their own hands, and ran off.
The environmental group dumped the papayas in front of the Agriculture and Cooperatives Ministry yesterday to make its objection to the lifting of the ban loud and clear to the government.
It was the second protest about the controversial issue in five days after reports the ministry will today seek cabinet approval for the lifting of the ban on open-field trials of transgenic crops.
But this time, after the dumping, people flocked to load up on the free papayas, ignoring the environmental organisation's campaign against the dangers of GM fruit _ a message Greenpeace has been trying to get through to the government and the public for years.
Many passers-by, who mostly knew nothing about transgenic fruit, said they did not care about any health risks.
They were just thinking about how hungry they were.
''I don't care if they're dangerous,'' said papaya salad seller Gig Krueyat, 70. ''I don't know what the threat is ... nothing serious, I think ...''
Mrs Gig helped herself to three sacks of the fruit in minutes. Others, including some ministry officials and Rasi Salai dam protesters from Sri Sa Ket province who were camped near the ministry, also did not let the opportunity slip by.
A man waiting in traffic for the lights to go green near the ministry, leapt out of his car and joined the feast.
''I'm not scared of GM papayas. Rather, I'm scared I won't have any to eat,'' said Ubon Ratchathani villager Ampon Tantima, 31, before rushing back to his car with the free fruit.
Only some people at yesterday's protest said they would not eat GM papayas in case there were health risks.
Greenpeace, a staunch protester against GM foods, did not say that all its three truckloads of papayas dumped at the ministry were genetically modified.
But GM papaya seeds, experimented on by the Khon Kaen Agricultural Research Station, were found by the group to have slipped through to 2,669 farmers in 37 provinces three years ago.
The group, blocking three entrance gates to the ministry with mountains of papayas, demanded the government not repeal the April 13 cabinet resolution, which bans GM open-field trials.
The group fears that if the field trials are allowed, pollen from GM papayas or other crops will be carried by insects or the wind to contaminate non-GM farms.
They also warned that open-field GM trials, if they go ahead, will hit Thailand's exports of agricultural produce as other countries would order a halt to crop imports from Thailand.
Natwipha Ewasakul, a genetic engineering campaigner for Greenpeace Southeast Asia, said the crowd scrambling for the dumped papayas yesterday reflected a lack of knowledge about GMO issues among Thai consumers.
''This shows the failure of government agencies to educate people about the possible health risks of genetically-engineered crops,'' she said.
The incident was also clear evidence that once crops were contaminated with GMOs, people would not be able to avoid eating them because it was impossible to identify GM from non-GM food, said Ms Natwipha. ''This is the true danger of GM food,'' she said.
Thailand? (beat ya!)
Actually, Ms. Activist, this shows, yet again, the liberal mind at work. You see a lack of education about health risks of genetically engineered food; they, on the other hand, see the health risks of an empty stomach.
That was in one of those zones where DeKalb and others have restricted, fenced zones with non-BT GM corn under development.
100% of our route was otherwise wall to wall GM BT corn!
Sure different than 40 years ago when you'd have to run your wipers night and day to make your way across the Cornbelt, and there we did it in the heart and there was hardly any problem with keeping things clean.
And don't forget about the crusted slime on the fender that might take 3-4 washings to get off
people would not be able to avoid eating them because it was impossible to identify GM from non-GM food, said Ms Natwipha."...in fact," she continued, "the papayas we dumped couldn't be differentiated as GM or non-GM. Whoops, forget I said that."
GM crops reduce pesticide use.
That’s consistent with their agenda, which is near-elimination of the human species.
Maybe there's a clue in there for the Greenfreaks. Naah, they'd rather see people starve.
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