Steve Marsh lodged a writ in the WA Supreme Court on April 3 over the contamination of his land by GM seeds from his neighbours’ property.
Seventy per cent of Mr Marsh's 478ha farm was stripped of its organic certification in 2010 as a result of the contamination. The loss of the certification means the Marsh family, who spent ten years establishing their organic farm, cannot sell their produce at higher prices. Marsh is suing for his losses and requesting a permanent injunction to protect his farm from more contamination.
Steve Marsh’s legal case has wide reaching ramifications for all Australians. The legal battle is not just over money, but whether Australian farmers will be able to grow GM-free crops now and in the future.
In Canada, it took less than five years before all canola was contaminated by GM seeds and it was impossible to grow anything else. In Australia, farmers growing GM crops do not even have to tell their neighbour that they’re growing it. A farmer might not know that they’re field has been contaminated by GM until they take their produce to market!