Detailed, referenced, written responses to a wide range of formal consultations concerning issues relating to GM in food and farming. This includes objections to UK GM field trials, submissions to parliamentary inquiries and more. Multi-agency responses are submitted on behalf of GM Freeze and other organisations.
National Food Strategy
24 Oct 2019
GM Freeze submission to the open Call for Evidence for the proposed new National Food Strategy, in which we propose:
- High standards achieved through robust regulation of the use of genetically modified organisms (GMOs).
- Informed choice through clear consumer labelling and meaningful public engagement that values lay contributions and incorporates social, ethical and economic impacts alongside scientific analysis.
- Value and protect genetic diversity by discouraging monoculture and opposing the patenting of genetic resources.
- Address root problems within the food and farming system, rather than treating the symptoms.
Nuffield Council on Bioethics – Genome Editing and Farmed Animals
19 Sep 2019
GM Freeze responded to the Nuffield Council on Bioethics call for evidence on Genome Editing and Farmed Animals. Key points in our evidence include:
- There is growing evidence that genome editing is not as precise or targeted as those promoting it would have us believe.
- Many proposed applications of genome editing to farmed animals are likely to perpetuate and deepen the negative impacts of intensive farming.
- Public involvement in the development of policy and regulation of genome editing in farmed animals must be meaningful and broad ranging.
- We are concerned about the framing of the background and questions in the call for evidence to the inquiry.
Defra: Multi-agency response to GM potato trial 19/R29/01
16 Apr 2019
GM Freeze and thirty other organisations asked Defra to refuse The Sainsbury Laboratory permission to plant an open field trial of GM potatoes.
Defra: Multi-agency response to GM camelina trial 19/R08/01
20 Mar 2019
GM Freeze and thirty-four other organisations asked Defra to refuse Rothamsted Research’s application for a new open field trial of GM camelina plants.
Defra: Multi-agency response to GM wheat trial 19/R52/02
26 Feb 2019
GM Freeze and thirty-two other organisations come together to ask Defra not to allow the John Innes Centre to plant an open-air field trial of GM wheat.
Defra: Multi-agency response to GM brassica trial 19/R52/01
26 Feb 2019
GM Freeze and thirty-one other organisations come together to ask Defra not to allow the John Innes Centre to hold an open-air field trial of genome-edited GM Brassica
Bright Blue: Manifesto for Conservation
29 Nov 2018
GM Freeze responded to think tank Bright Blue’s call for evidence towards a Conservative Manifesto for Conservation, which included a specifc question about the regulation of GM in food production. Our evidence makes the following key points:
- The authorisation of GM crops must follow a robust, transparent and consistent process that encompasses social and ethical impacts alongside safety concerns.
- GM regulation must protect the entire food chain through effective and consistently enforced measures to prevent GM contamination.
- Consumers want to make an informed choice through clear GM labelling.
- All forms of genetic engineering, including genome editing, should be regulated in the same way as established GM techniques.
Department of International Trade consultations on post-Brexit trade negotiations
24 Oct 2018
GM Freeze evidence to four separate consultations on trade negotiations. In each, we call for the retention of high standards on GM regulations, including the labelling of food with GM ingredients.
Details of the consultations themselves can be found on the Department for International Trade website.
EFRA: Agriculture Bill Inquiry
18 Oct 2018
GM Freeze evidence to the House of Commons Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Commitee’s Agriculture Bill Inquiry.
Key points in our evidence include:
- Genetic resources and genetic diversity are both key public goods. Genetic resources should not be controlled through patenting.
- The UK needs a robust and transparent process for authorising the use of GMOs; effective measures to prevent GM contamination and an effective liability regime for those affected by GM contamination.
- Transparency and fairness require compulsory clear labelling of foods containing genetically modified ingredients.
- The devolved nations’ divergent policy on GM in food and farming must be respected and legislation developed that will allow it to be fully implemented.
Food Standards Agency consultation response: Retained EU Law
18 Oct 2018
GM Freeze response to the Food Standards Agency’s consultation on their proposed approach to retained EU law for food and feed safety and hygiene.
Our evidence raises concerns about the UK’s capacity to replicate the role of EFSA in providing GM risk assessments, the importance of GM labelling and the need to respect Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland’s rejection of GM crops. We also highlight the opportunity Brexit offers to improve legislation around GM through improved risk assessments, contamination control measures and labelling of GM-fed products.