DEFRA minister slams Rothamsted GM vandalism

By Rick Pendrous and Mike Stones

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Research

Caroline Spelman condemned GM vandalism
Caroline Spelman condemned GM vandalism
The government has condemned the vandalism of a genetically modified (GM) wheat trial yesterday morning (May 20) at Rothamsted Research centre, Herefordshire.

Environment secretary Caroline Spelman told FoodManufacture.co.uk: "It is unfortunate as we need the science to establish the evidence. With a science base and evidence you can have a view of the benefits ​[of GM crops].”

Spelman was speaking after giving the keynote presentation today at a conference 'Secure and sustainable food – the Rio +20 challenge', organised by the Food and Drink Federation in conjunction with Forum for the Future.

Drought resistant rice

Spelman cited the potential of GM technologies such as drought resistant rice varieties being developed in Australia. Such innovations could reduce the pressure on water-stressed regions of the world by allowing rice to be grown without paddy fields, she said.

A spokesman for Rothamsted Research centre told FoodManufacture.co.uk: the vandalism would not affect the progress of the experiment designed to deter aphid pests. If successful, the non-commercial trial could help develop products which boost yields while cutting the use of pesticides.

To read the full story, click here​.

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