Graham Watson MEP
Liberal Democrat Member of the European Parliament for South West England and Gibraltar
A local champion with an international reputation
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Published on Wednesday 19th May 2004
Commenting on the European Commission's decision this morning to lift a de facto five-year moratorium on GM maize, South West Liberal Democrat MEP Graham Watson said:
"With no scientific evidence of harm to human health and a WTO case looming, the European Commission had no choice but to authorise this GM maize for import. Fortunately, thanks to the tough labelling and traceability standards for GM foods which MEPs insisted on, tins containing GM maize will have to be clearly labelled so supermarkets and consumers will be able to avoid these products if they choose."
"However, the legal framework for GMOs is not yet complete. I am very concerned about the loss of income which organic and conventional farmers could suffer as a result of contamination from GM crops. Liberal Democrats insist that no GM crops should be grown in any Member State until rules on co-existence and separation distances have been agreed and the issues of liability and compensation for any losses have been addressed.".