Hungary is against GMO, new legislation in France
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Hungary will extend its ban on growing genetically modified maize, government officials told the press on Thursday, reports the Hungarian News Agency.
Hungarian researchers have recently found evidence that maize types freely traded in the European Union represent environmental and health risks, said Environment Ministry state secretary Andras Gombos. According to the researchers, the toxic content of these types of maize in wet weather conditions can become thousands of times higher than traditional pesticides, he added. The ban was introduced in January last year. Farm minister Jozsef Graf said it was in Hungary's economic interest to keep the country GMO-free. Hungary is one of Europe's biggest grain producers. He said Hungary would try to get Europeanministers to uphold the ban at a meeting in the summer.
Not so good news comes from France. The government there adopted new EU rules on the genetically modified crops, according to Agence France Press. The French cabinet adopted a bill that brings the country into line with EU rules on crop trials and cultivation of genetically modified organisms (GMOs), despite fierce opposition from green activists. A government
spokesman said the bill reflected both the concerns of environmentalists and the needs of scientific research, but critics charged that it paved the way for an uncontrolled spread of GMO cultivation. Faced with deep public distrust of GMOs, France has dragged its feet over
implementing European Union directives from 2001 and 2003 but now faces heavy fines unless it moves to write the rules into national legislation.
Parliament is to start debating the bill by next month, and the government hopes a law will be adopted by the end of the year. 60 % of the French are hostile to GMO crops, polls show, and 78 % would back a temporary moratorium until their impact on health and the environment is fully understood.