In light of the fact that Teagasc has lodged an application with the EPA for a licence to grow GM potatoes at its headquarters in Oakpark, IOFGA are demanding that Teagasc be held accountable for their decision to waste taxpayers money on this project.
Grace Maher, Development Officer with IOFGA, stated that “it is economic suicide to be considering growing GM crops in Ireland, especially as Irish agriculture is among the few sectors in growth. This move immediately threatens the export market worth 9.1billion in 2011. Ireland has an excellent reputation internationally as a clean green island that is also a GM free region, and we need to build on this reputation not destroy it”. She went on to add that “In survey after survey European consumers have consistently stated that they do not want GM food. We cannot afford to turn a deaf ear to this in the current economic situation. European consumers want natural food produced in a low input system which is what we have here in Ireland”.
Teagasc continues to pedal this unwanted technology. This current licence application to trial GM potatoes that have blight resistant traits is unnecessary, as there are currently blight resistant potatoes on the market which do not contain GM genes. In this austere economic climate we need to end wasteful public spending immediately and enforce accountability on those who continue to do so.