Frequently Asked Questions

 

What do we mean by GM Free food producer?

GM Free food producer status is only about what is grown in Hawke’s Bay fields. It covers outdoor production and field trials of GM food, feed and livestock.

It would not prevent Hawke’s Bay-based food companies from using imported GM ingredients (such as GM oils), should they wish to.

The reason for this distinction is that the outdoor use of GMOs affects all farmers and growers in the region because of the likelihood of physical contamination and negative market perceptions. Using of imported GM ingredients is different because the risk of contamination remains an individual choice.

Official GM Free food producer status also would have no bearing on the use of GM medicines or laboratory-based use of genetic modification by local researchers.

 

For how long?

This is not forever.

We say ten years – the life of the District and Regional Plans. If at the end of that period, the opportunities for the region continue to lie with GM Free status, then that policy can be renewed. Otherwise, the policy will lapse.

 

Won’t Hawke’s Bay farmers and producers be missing out on GM crops?

None of the GMOs currently available are relevant or advantageous to Hawke’s Bay’s agricultural economy thus far, nor in where the region needs to position itself.

To our knowledge, there is nothing in the GM R+D pipeline that would:

  • outweigh the value of GM free to the region’s producers, and
  • be ready for release within the GM Free period we are proposing.

 

Want to know more?

This Frequently Asked Questions summary may well answer other questions you might have.

You can also contact us if you wish to know more.

 

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