Monday, 30 January 2017

Genetically engineered foods: Two firms in focus

By Udumula Sudhakar Reddy

GHMC food safety officials on Monday served notices to two companies involved in the distribution of genetically engineered foods in Hyderabad supermarkets. Shree Agencies and SR International were served notices, asking to explain about imports and licences based on Green Mills Chocolate Cheerios samples lifted from supermarkets.

According to GHMC assistant food controller Mr K. Balaji Raju, notices were served based on the inspection report of Balaji Grand Bazar in Banjara Hills. “We have served notices to Shree Agencies of Padmarag Nagar and SR International of New Delhi, seeking details pertaining to these companies,” he said. Meanwhile the Consortium of Indian Farmers’ Association on Monday wrote to Prime Minister Narendra Modi asking the government to allow farmers to cultivate Genetically Modified Mustard as GM foods are approved in the US and elsewhere and are also being imported into India, though illegally.

Quoting the DC investigation story in the letter, CIFA chief advisor P. Chengal Reddy said, “GM is a silver bullet to solve highly complex crop problems and also achieve food security as well as sustain small farmers in all situations.” In another letter to the Chief Justice of India, CIFA stated, “Genetically engineered cornflakes, GM mustard sauce and many other imported foods of GM origin are sold in the private sector in India. Farmer should be given access to genetic technology.”

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