Monsanto’s Global Director for Food and Nutrition Outreach, Dr. Milton Stokes, assured the public anew of the safety of GM crops. During his second visit to Manila and in a press briefing recently held at Novotel Hotel in Quezon City, Dr. Stokes underscored that “there is no difference between GM and non -GM food in terms of nutritional value and safety.”
Stokes said it will be “absolutely wrong not to make use of the GM technology which improves the quantity and quality of crops when you have millions of people living on less than USD6 a day.” Stokes underscored that “plant biotechnology products have been studied much more extensively than any other plant product, providing equal or greater assurance of safety of these products compared to conventional plant varieties.”
Meanwhile, Stokes said GM food labeling is not necessary and will only increase the cost of food which consumers have to bear. He said there will only be a need for food labeling “if there’s a scientific health or safety reason for it – for example, because the food is different in some material respect.”Meantime, Stokes agreed that there can be voluntary GM Food labeling “as long as the information is accurate, truthful and avoids misleading consumers about the food.”
Stokes also praised the Philippine Regulatory System for continuing to be science-based. “It is important that you have a science-based policy and regulatory system so that people will have access to safe, nutritious food while reducing the impact on the environment.”Stokes added.
Billions of biotech crop produce-derived meals have been consumed in the last decade. Since the launch biotech hybrids, more than 500,000 corn farmers in the Philippines have enjoyed higher crop yields, reduced farm input costs and increased their bottomlinefarm profits. (MonPhil/TN)