Bangladesh: Farmers say No to Genetically Modified Vegetables

By Mae-Wan Ho – The Ecologist –

100 civil society organisations havewritten to Bangladesh Prime Minister Sheikh Hasina to oppose the commercialisation of a genetically modified (GM) eggplant.

Known locally as Bt-Brinjal, the GM eggplant contains a synthetic insect-killing toxin similar to Cry1Ac from the soil bacterium Bacillus thuringiensis (hence the acronym Bt) targeted at the fruit and shoot borer.

Bt toxins are already known to have many off-target effects, including toxicity to beneficial pest predators, animals and human cells.

The Bt-Brinjal approved for commercial growing in Bangladesh last November originated from Mahyco-Monsanto, but the varieties approved were developed by scientists in Bangladesh. The company tried to commercialize Bt Brinjal in India several years ago and failed.

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