|April 14, 2005,
as reported by just-food.com: Genetically modified
rice is growing “out of control” in China
according to a claim made by international environmental
organization Greenpeace Wednesday. The organization claims
to have found genetically modified rice, unapproved for
human consumption, growing among the Chinese countryside.
It is the organization’s belief that the plants
have been planted and sold illegally for the last two
Chinese officials are vehemently denying the claims.
“I cannot agree with the findings of the report
by Greenpeace and I am wondering if the tests conducted
by the organization are scientific or not,” said
Zhu Xinquan, chairman of the Chinese Society of Agro-Biotechnology.
An official with the Office of Genetically Modified
Organism Safety under the ministry of Agriculture said,
“We have not seen the concrete testing reports.
Moreover, the testing of GM rice seeds should be based
on China's technical standards.”
“We've asked the agricultural department in Hubei
Province to conduct on-the-spot examination on this
issue,” said the official who declined to be identified.
The Chinese official admitted that field trials of GE
rice are being conducted in Hubei as well in some other
places. But the official said the plantation acreage
is limited to 30 mu (Two hectares).
“Sales of GM rice seeds are strictly prohibited
and there are GM safety offices at province level to
conduct regular checks on it,” the official said.