May 28, 2007
Crop & Food Research has welcomed a decision by the
Environmental Risk Management Authority to allow one of its
scientists to set up a contained field test of
genetically-modified brassicas in the Lincoln Region.
Research leader Dr Mary Christey says she will comply with the
conditions attached to the approval.
“ERMA has come up with some additional controls that we think
will be effective in ensuring that there is no unintentional
release of genetically modified material into the environment.
We believe these additional controls are achievable and we
Dr Christey says the goal of her research is to find ways to
keep brassicas free from caterpillar damage without the use of
Dr Christey has been granted permission to assess the agronomic
performance of four genetically-modified vegetable and forage
brassicas – broccoli, cabbage, cauliflower and forage kale. The
brassicas will be modified for resistance to caterpillar pests.
The trial will be contained and the plants removed before
bolting to prevent the spread of pollen.
Crop & Food Research’s General Manager Research Prue Williams
says it is important that New Zealand scientists continue to
explore the benefits of GM technology. “This application for
brassica research falls within the Government’s recommendation
to ‘proceed with caution’. What we learn from this study will be
essential to robust assessment of GM technology.”
- ERMA New Zealand
places strict controls on GM brassica test