Earlier this month, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that unapproved genetically engineered (GE) wheat developed by Monsanto had contaminated an Oregon farmer’s field. Investigations are currently underway to determine the source of the contamination, however, this incident is just one example of ineffective US regulatory policies and the difficulty of containing GE crops.
According to Kristina Hubbard and Neva Hassanein, “Congress and the USDA must fix the rubber-stamp approach to trials. Strong requirements for preventing contamination must include enforceable (rather than voluntary) performance standards related to confinement of genetic material, as well as active investigation to ensure compliance. The lack of transparency hinders the ability of non-GE farmers to take protective measures, and it thwarts meaningful public participation and independent scientific inquiry.”
To learn more, please visit Hubbard and Hassanein’s op-ed piece published in the Oregonian.