Farmers challenge Golden Rice lobbyist to a debate

Mar. 03, 2015

Farmers group Kilusang Magbubukid ng Pilipinas (KMP) is challenging the foreign lobbyists of Golden Rice to a public debate saying the Canada-based lobby group’s statements are “misleading”.

KMP chairperson and Anakpawis Partylist representative Rafael Mariano challenges Dr. Patrick Moore of Allow Golden Rice Now! to a debate “so that the people can once and for all know the truth behind the lies of Golden Rice.”

The lobby group is coming in the country on March 3 to 10 to campaign for the adoption of the Golden Rice in the Philippine Market. The said visit is part of their Asia-wide campaign tour in the Philippines, Bangladesh and India to promote Golden Rice.

Mariano said the Allow Golden Rice Now! aims to convince government officials and the Filipino people to accept Golden Rice as means to solve Vitamin A deficiency (VAD).

Dr. Chito Medina, National Coordinator of MASIPAG, said that the complex issue of VAD and malnutrition is inextricably linked to poverty and lack of access to resources and Golden Rice “is a deceptive solution to the problem.”

“The issue of Vitamin A Deficiency and malnutrition cannot be solved by an unstable and yet unproven technology, such as genetic engineering. On the contrary, it will further endanger the health and livelihood of farmers and consumers,” Medina said.

Medina cited the study made by MASIPAG in which farmers who adopted GM corn suffered further indebtedness, health problems and a poisoned environment.

The group said the Philippines is abundant with vitamin-A rich vegetables “so there is no reason for the government to commercialize the Golden Rice.”

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