News on ethics in medicine and biotechnology: June 2003
UN food safety and trade standards commission opens meeting
The Codex Alimentarius Commission opened its 26th session today with representatives from 169 countries coming together to decide on the adoption of a number of controversial new food safety standards designed to safeguard the health of consumers worldwide, while improving global agricultural trade opportunities.
More information about the Codex can be found at http://www.codexalimentarius.net.
30 June 2003, Food and Agricultural Organisation of the United Nations
Scientist urges EU not to ban stem cell research
A leading fertility expert urged the European Union on Monday not to ban research on embryonic stem cells, saying it would hamper research into infertility and the search for cures for Parkinson's and Alzheimer's diseases.
30 June 2003, Reuters
Europe's GM ban could be lifted
Two crucial reports on Genetically Modified Organisms, to be debated today by the European Parliament, could lead to EU states lifting their ban on GMO foods. The two pieces of legislation, which will be voted on tomorrow, focus on tightening labelling laws for food containing genetically modified elements and providing rules for "co-existence" between GM and non-GM crops. This would allow Member States to take steps to protect conventional non-GM and organic crops from contamination by imposing restrictions on the growing of GM crops.
1 July 2003, Reuters
India and US sign biotech agreement
India and the United States are to set up a formal framework for research collaboration in agricultural biotechnology.
27 June 2003, SciDev.net
ARGUMENTS over genetics work in opposite ways on different sides of the Atlantic. In America, genetic modification of plants raises barely an eyebrow. In Britain a rich assortment of lobby groups, now aided by Michael Meacher, the recently-sacked environment minister, has made enough noise on the issue to get supermarkets to remove GM foods from their shelves and to persuade the government to launch a summer-long public consultation before daring to lift a moratorium on commercial planting of GM crops.
26 June 2003, The Economist
Trade dispute over GMOs reignites
Biotech industries want resolution of EU–US dispute, but new EU measures could complicate matters further.
26 June 2003, The Scientist
Bush – Europe's GM ban is starving Africans
On Monday (23 June), just days before a crucial EU-US summit, President George W Bush has once again blamed Europeans for starvation in Africa because they do not accept genetically modified foods.
24 June 2003, EUobserver.com
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