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'Frankenfood' spuds in Sweden due to 'error'

'Frankenfood' spuds in Sweden due to 'error'

Published: 09 Sep 2010 15:09 GMT+02:00
Updated: 09 Sep 2010 15:09 GMT+02:00

Seeds of a genetically modified potato ended up in a Swedish field due to “human error”, chemical giant BASF said on Thursday.

The German company admitted the mistake to investigators in Brussels after the discovery of the seeds in a field in south central Sweden.

The German company, which is authorised to grow a strain called Amflora but not the new, experimental Amadea variety, told the European Commission that the wrong seed was fed into the wrong tube, according to commission spokesman Frederic Vincent.

BASF in Germany also cited "confusion" in a statement released there, after it was summoned to Brussels by the body which is responsible for licensing products long labelled 'Frankenfoods' in media.

Vincent said that while Brussels "took note" of the explanation, it wanted answers on quality control checks at laboratory level in Germany as well as in the fields where Amflora is grown in the Czech Republic, Germany and Sweden.

Commission officials will travel next week to "clarify the magnitude of the contamination in all seed lots of Amflora," Vincent added.

An expert at environmental campaigners Greenpeace, which initially brought the contamination to light, said BASF's explanation was "worrying."

Marco Contiero said the company "has not answered if other countries also have this problem," and urged that all Amflora sites "starting with Sweden" be destroyed as a precautionary point of principle.

Regional authorities in northen Germany already on Tuesday banned Amflora for these reasons.

Brussels "strongly stressed that since Amadea is not authorised, it will not accept its growing in EU fields other than experimental fields," Vincent underlined.

Amflora is a strain of potato that is authorised for the likes of glue or paper-making, but not human consumption.

Greenpeace claims that Amadea, the subject of an application for authorisation just days before the seeds were found in Sweden, has been "grown illegally in open fields in Sweden for months."

AFP/The Local (news@thelocal.se)

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Your comments about this article

20:11 September 9, 2010 by GefleFrequentFlyer
Greenpeace cracks me up. At what point in the future will Greenpeace make a judgement on when it is acceptable to use GM foods. There is only so much land that can be put under cultivation, and a exponential amount of mouths to feed on this planet that grows year after year. How many rainforests need to be plowed under? Tonnes of nitrogen fertilizers spread?

What prompts my question is the "tortilla shortage" a few years ago due to "increased food for fuel consumption by the ethanol industry" where American corn growers were labled as baddies for diverting resources to energy production.

World-wide annual harvests and inventories are very, very tight, and with cyclical crop failures coupled with famines and burgeoning populations, GM foods will need to be addressed by current non-GM countries.
00:30 September 10, 2010 by Da Goat
I smell a rat here, WHO was it put the amadea potatoes in the field? (or do they grow with purple leaves or flashing lights)

do greenpeace do regular genetic fingerprinting of random crops? or did they plant (sorry pun) their own evidence!?

also if it is nor for consumption .... exactly what are we getting excited about???
04:44 September 10, 2010 by porksteak
Cool. They crossed a potato with a couch to create the world's first true couch potato.
11:41 September 10, 2010 by Freyja14
What's next? Hmmm GMO fish. And it's super funny that people actually think that GMO foods are the answers to the world's food crisis. GMO fish, "the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ruled that industrially-raised salmon, genetically engineered to eat constantly and grow rapidly aresafe for human consumption - even though the FDA found that these fish contained elevated levels of growth hormones, including insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1), ...a suspected carcinogen."

GMO's ARE KILLING HONEYBEES, "Terminator seeds; genetically produced and distributed by powerful multinational lobbies manipulate government and agricultural policy to encompass their agenda of dominance in the agricultural industry. American conglomerates such as Monsanto, Pioneer Seeds, and others, have created seeds that do not reproduce (whereas these seeds have a life span of the crop chosen). The sterilizing of the plant by the means of sterilizing the flower pollen genetically altered and mutated for production in the agricultural industry. Logic states that if the flower pollen is sterile, bees are potentially going malnourished and dying of illness due to the lack of nutrients and the interruption of the of the digestive capacity of what they feed on through the summer and over the winter hibernation process."-http://www.infowars.com/death-of-the-bees-gmo-crops-and-the-decline-of-bee-colonies-in-north-america/

**38% of the world's grain is fed to animals, 1.1 billion people in the world don't have access to clean water yet 20,000 liters are used to produce one pound of beef. How about reducing meat consumption to help feed the world with grains, etc? Is that such an odd concept? Change your diet, not the climate?

GMO foods ARE NOT THE ANSWER!! They make people sick, the are damaging to the environment, they bankrupt small farmers, and yes the companies that produce these seeds know it. But they don't care because they are making $$$$
15:52 September 10, 2010 by GefleFrequentFlyer
Maybe, just maybe, disease and limits on available food are a "built in" population control measure on a planet of limited size.

But, you have aid agencies hell bent on seeing that every mouth on this planet has the available UN mandated access to water and 2000 calories per day. I'm just saying there is a tradeoff somewhere (probably in the spectrum called "reality"), where's it going to be?
22:09 September 10, 2010 by americanska
GefleFrequentFlyer - Maybe, just maybe, all the diseases in the world and the human bodies fragility is just a built in population control measure. or do you believe healthcare is "basic right" that should be "free"

maybe...just maybe - since evolution only has a goal of reproduction - the swedish government should kill everyone that can no longer reproduce. That way we don't have to bring progress to the world with healthcare and high yield/ high nutrition food.
12:50 September 12, 2010 by chitowngirl
Sweden needs to be aware of the truth. Once again, the EU does not really have the best interest of the people in mind. In Brussels, on July 30,2010 The EU APPROVED the use of GM Corn (Maize) with Herculex. (Dow Agro Sciences, in colaboration with Du Pont, Pioneer, Monsanto). The document is at dowagro (dot)com.

Thanks for all you important info Freyja14. Yes, the FDA has approve the use of GM salmon. This will wipe out all natural salmon on the planet within 14 lifecycles. This frankenfish will not be able to spawn or behave in any natural way. Big corporate interests are destroying our planet!
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