GM wheat will be planted in field trials across Australia this year, and our government science body, the CSIRO, plans to have GM bread on supermarket shelves by 2015. This year's feild trials are scientific scale trials, which means most are under one hectare in size. But if CSIRO suceeds with their plan for Australia to become the first country in the world to approve GM wheat, we could be facing large-scale commercial field trials of GM wheat within the next two years.
That means two things; global biotech patents on our daily bread, and inevitable contamination of Australian farmers' conventional and organic wheat crops.
While Austrlaia's GM wheat trials have been dressed-up as 'objective', scientific research, a Greenpeace investigation has revealed that global GM companies including Monsanto, Limagrain and BASF are the money behind the trials and are partnered with our so-called public research bodies to push GM wheat approval in Australia.
One of the clearest signs of the power of GM company dollars is the flimsy excuse for a risk assessment that the Australian Government performed before giving the all-clear for corporate scientists and their global biotech partners to release experimental GM wheat into the field. The Government recognises that "Gene technology has the potential to cause unintended effects due to random insertion of the introduced genetic material", but they go on to dismiss the risk of genetic pollution as negligible.
They also dismiss any risk of contamination of non-GM crops from this year's GM wheat field trials, even though all local and international evidence shows that GM can't be contained in the field. The biggest GM contamination event in history started with a small scale field trial of Bayer's GM rice. The single contamination event cost the rice industry $1.2 billion.
If you don't want GM bread and pasta, if you don't want our farmers to have to fight to prevent contamination of their wheat crop from Monsanto's patented GMOs, tell our Agriculture Minister that you don't want to eat GM bread and will hold his government responsible for any contamination from the GM wheat trials he has approved. Click here firstname.lastname@example.org to email the Minister, or call his office on (02) 6277 7520.