jueves, abril 08, 2004


Angola, one of the world's poorest countries, says no to genetically modified food "aid". The promoters of GM foods and crops and apologists of the biological industrial complex might want to offer an explanation. After all, they always say that those who reject agricultural biotech are all elite, white, privileged environmentalists from rich countries. Here is a message from the UK-based GAIA Foundation:

Dear Friends and Colleagues,

The US pressure on African countries to accept GM food aid continues in

Angola is the latest country to implement its rights under the Biosafety Protocol, and has told the World Food Programme (WFP) that it does not wish to accept unmilled GM food aid. This means that food aid sent from the US, in the form of genetically modified maize, is not acceptable to Angola in grain form. Since the WFP says that it will not be possible to mill the US-donated maize, they may have to reject it altogether.

Angola has recognised that it cannot compromise its long-term agricultural biodiversity and food security through GM contamination.

While the Southern Africa director for the WFP has said that no-one is likely to starve as a result, the US media is churning out a great deal of propaganda, calling Angolans ³criminal², ³immoral², ³ignorant², ³avaricious²

and ³mindless². They seem to have conveniently forgotten that although Zambia made the same decision, and faced the same criticism in 2002, they produced a surplus of over 120,000 tonnes the following year.

In reality, it is USAID who must change their policy of forcing unwanted GM food on African countries. This practice only serves to contaminate local agriculture and undermine local markets with flooded imports. The EU policy of giving aid in the form of cash is much more beneficial to regions, as it allows the WFP to buy and transport regional surpluses, supporting local economies instead of undermining them.

The WFP must also take responsibility reduce their overdependence on USAID and their damaging practices, especially now that more countries will probably follow suit and reject GM food aid in the future, in accordance with the Biosafety Protocol.

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