Friday, June 20, 2003 -- CropChoice news, 06/19/03
via Agenet: Rebuffed in attempts to sell genetically
modified products to Europe, the US government and the
American biotech industry are, according to this story,
focusing on Brazil, one of the world's leading agricultural
The story says that Washington this week is helping
pay for a group of 20 Brazilian politicians, scientists
and environmentalists to study the use of GM crops in
the US and South Africa.
The study trip includes dinner with executives of Monsanto,
the US bio-technology giant. Brazil's agricultural seed
industry is also contributing to the tour cost.
The study comes as Brazil's government drafts legislation
that could determine the future of GM crops there. With
an estimated harvest of 115m tonnes of grains and billions
of dollars in annual seed and pesticide sales, much
is at stake.
Critics say the US government has been overtly promoting
GM crops in developing countries after it challenged
European Union restrictions on biotechnology in the
World Trade Organisation last month.
Mariana Paoli, with Greenpeace in São Paolo,
was quoted as saying, "This is blatant lobbying
by Monsanto through the US government."
The US embassy in Brasília says the objective
of the trip is simply to provide the delegation with
information on the issue.