News of the WeekGENETICALLY MODIFIED FOOD

Britain Struggles to Turn Anti-GM Tide

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Science  28 May 1999:
Vol. 284, Issue 5419, pp. 1442-1444
DOI: 10.1126/science.284.5419.1442

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Summary

In an effort to restore public confidence in genetically modified crops and food, the British government last week announced the creation of two new commissions to advise politicians on the long-term impact of genetic technologies on human health, agriculture, and the environment. At the same time, the government released a report from its chief scientific adviser and chief medical officer which concluded that there was no "current evidence to suggest that the GM [genetic modification] technologies used to produce food are inherently harmful." They did, however, call for a public health surveillance network that will quickly flag any problems that may arise among people eating GM foods, such as allergic reactions. The tactics seem not to have worked, however.

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