Hungry Suffer Due to G.M.O. Bans by Europe’s “Coalition of the Ignorant”

(p. 6) CALL it the “Coalition of the Ignorant.” By the first week of October [2015], 17 European countries — including Austria, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, Hungary, Italy, the Netherlands and Poland — had used new European Union rules to announce bans on the cultivation of genetically modified crops.
. . .
I have spent time with malnourished children in Tanzania whose families were going hungry because cassava crops were wiped out by brown-streak disease. That was particularly painful because in neighboring Uganda I had recently visited trial plots of genetically modified cassava that demonstrated complete resistance to the virus. The faces of the hungry children come to mind every time I hear European politicians boast about their country’s G.M.O. ban and demand that the rest of the world follow suit — as Scotland’s minister did in August.
Thanks to Europe’s Coalition of the Ignorant, we are witnessing a historic injustice perpetrated by the well fed on the food insecure. Europe’s stance, if taken up internationally, risks marginalizing a critically important technology that we must surely employ if humanity is to feed itself sustainably in an increasingly difficult and challenging future. I can only hope that the Continent’s policy makers come to their senses before it is too late.

For the full commentary, see:
MARK LYNAS. “With G.M.O. Policies, Europe Turns Against Science.” The New York Times, SundayReview Section (Sun., OCT. 25, 2015): 6.
(Note: ellipsis, and bracketed year, added.)
(Note: the online version of the commentary was updated on OCT. 24, 2015, and has the title “With G.M.O. Policies, Europe Turns Against Science.”)

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