Transgenics pose risk to country’s organics, agro leader warns
Santo Domingo.- A farm production leader on Friday warned of the risks posed by the use of transgenic seeds and animal feed to the country’s organic crops such as cacao, coffee, bananas and avocados, noting that the European Union bans fruits and vegetables which contain those agents, referred to as GMOs.
Jose Miguel de Peña, who heads the agribusiness group Greenhouse Clusters, cautioned the country’s agro producers against the use of transgenics produced mostly by the multination Monsanto, and urged the Dominican Government to ban them “until everything is known,” about their effects.
“A country can’t skip ahead of its exports and risk its health by being complacent. We must wait for Europe to accept them, because of our dependence on that market,” the business leader said of transgenic crops, which according to Colorado State University, is a plant that "contains a gene or genes which have been artificially inserted instead of the plant acquiring them through pollination. The inserted gene sequence (known as the transgene) may come from another unrelated plant, or from a completely different species."
Interviewed by Huchi Lora in the El Dia program on Telesistema, de Peña reiterated that the country should follow Europe’s lead on GMOs and not accept their direct consumption via fruits and vegetables. “The European Union has protected itself, we haven’t. We should see if other countries accept them.”