May 9, 2003 -- CropChoice news: The decision of the state
of Victoria to impose a 12-month freeze on the commercial
release of genetically engineered canola means that
all of Australia's major canola-growing states have
imposed some form of moratorium on the commercial release
of the country's first proposed transgenic food crop.
The Victorian decision comes as a major blow to applicants
Monsanto and Bayer, who have lobbied strongly for the
release of their GE canola products. As one of the world's
largest exporters of canola, Australia is seen as a
key area for expansion of GE crops, which are reported
to be struggling to find acceptance outside North America
Surveys have shown that 70 percent of Australians are
concerned about eating genetically modified food. Many
major food companies in the country have responded by
removing such foods from their supply chains.