Monitor: The Sunday newspapers comment on policy towards genetically modified food

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The Independent Culture
"FOR ALL the cackhandedness of his presentation, Mr Blair deserves credit for refusing to be swayed on this issue. He has for once ignored the promptings of his focus groups. The potential benefits of genetic modification for both our health and our environment, are too important to be jeopardised for the sake of one week's headlines. Mr Blair may even find that, in the long run, a principled stand can win the voters' respect. "

Sunday Telegraph

WHAT LORD Sainsbury's role in the genetically modified foods debate has exposed is the inadequacies of the modern parliamentary system for accom- modating talent plucked from outside the party machines. He has not entered politics: he has entered government. He thus arrives in high office without having been through the bruising apprenticeship that might have prepared him for [this] criticism and scrutiny. "

Sunday Business

THE PRIME Minister describes concerns about genetically modified foods as scaremongering. But his insistence in singing the praises of GM foods in such a gung-ho way is scary.

It is possible that GM foods are perfectly safe but until we know, we'd like less tinkering with our food, and a bit more humble pie from Mr Blair."

Sunday Mirror

"THE SCALE and reach of Monsanto's lobbying are disquieting in view of the Government's refusal to heed the growing fears about the possible impact of genetic modification on our food and environment. One wonders if our farmers would be enduring the absurd beef-on-the-bone ban if they had a fraction of Monsanto's PR clout."

Mail on Sunday

THOSE WHO raise doubts about genetically modified food are accused of adopting a Luddite position, but the truth is that scientists themselves are divided on the dangers and the benefits.

Far from taking an approach that is against science, we have sought just two concessions: a three-year moratorium on commercial crop development until the results of the Government's own research are available, and clear, consistent and compulsory labelling.

Independent on Sunday

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