GE Free New Zealand in Food & Environment, 19th July  2003
NZ government subsidizing biotech at public expense

The New Zealand government is starving the organic sector but continues to subsidize biotech and throw more taxpayer funds down the biotech drain.  This weeks news that more venture capital is to back the biotech industry shows government are determined to throw away the public's hard earned taxes on more useless enterprises that don't meet the approval of those who voted them into their positions of responsibility.

The government intends to invest $25 million of public money into more business partnerships in this sector. Will this mean that these are joint enterprises between government and public sectors indicating that the public will also be responsible for funding any ensuing risks, mitigation like that of the recently failed PPL research.

Similar to unfolding events in the US and UK, where basic research is being stifled while biotech soaks up any funding, New Zealand appears to be falling for the spurious arguments of the GE industry. US analysts are warning that 'even this increasingly cosy relationship with the government won�t save the biotech industry.'

"Why are we not investing in the organic sector?. Why is this research being pushed onto New Zealand when it is so obviously folly" said Jon Carapiet of GE Free NZ in food and environment. "The regulations, monitoring and enforcement of the GE industry are still severely lacking and yet the government insists on going full steam ahead."

The minister for Science and Technology last year declined to meet with GE Free Coalition groups to discuss the ethical and acceptable uses of this technology, then giving $22 million to gene technology whilst allocating only $1 million on researching any risks of GE.

These research results will not be available for another 2 years, therefore the moratorium is to be lifted without the knowledge that would be forthcoming from this research.

Contact Jon Carapiet - 09 815 3370

The Institute of Science in Society
Science Society Sustainability

Biotech century ending?
This miniseries charts the further collapse of the biotech empire, particular in the supposedly �highly lucrative� biomedical sector since the latter part of 2000. It is now desperately grasping for support from the taxpayer by hyping genetics and bio-defense. Don�t be fooled.

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