Bt eggplants in the Philippines

 

Since 1999 GENET collects and distributes information on various topics in the field of genetic engineering in agriculture, food production and health. With this "Special Topic: Bt eggplants in the Philippines" GENET aims at providing an overview about the debate on development and approval of Bt eggplants in this country, based on our archives.

2013-05-23 |

Philippine Court of Appeals ruled Bt eggplant field trials unsafe for humans, environment

THE Court of Appeals ruled recently that ongoing field trials for Bacillus thuriengensis talong (eggplant) in the country pose risks to human health and the environment, it was learned on Wednesday. In a 25-page decision penned by CA Associate Justice Isaias Dicdican, the appellate court’s Special 13th Division issued a writ of kalikasan ordering the Department of Environment and Natural Resources and other concerned government agencies to stop the trials. CA Associate Justices Myra Garcia-Fernandez and Nina Antonio-Valenzuela agreed with the decision. According to the court’s ruling, the trials violated the people’s constitutional right to a balanced and healthful ecology.

2012-11-22 |

Ban GMOs, top Indian scientist urges Philippine government

THE government should ban genetically modified organisms in the country, Indian scientist Dr. Tushar Chakraborty said on Wednesday. In a press conference organized by Greenpeace, Chakraborty, the principal scientist of the Gene Regulation Laboratory—Indian Institute of Chemical Biology, said banning of GMOs in the Philippines is the most prudent, science-based approach to the “uncertainties” surrounding GMO crop technologies. He also said GMO crops, like the insect-resistant Bacillus thuriengensis eggplant and the so-called golden rice, pose significant risks to human health and the environment.

2012-09-19 |

Philippine activists slam commercial production of Bt eggplant

Fearing for environmental and health hazards against public consumers, sustainable agriculture advocates here sought to stop the endorsement by local governments to support the commercial production of genetically-modified Bt Talong. In an interview with Davao Today, Ramer Tandoy of the Magsasaka at Siyentipiko para sa Pag-unlad ng Agrikultura (Masipag) said that Mahayco, a subsidiary of the transnational Monsanto Corporation, is seeking an endorsement following the expiration of the company's field testing permit in June this year. The field testing, according to Masipag, pushed through despite widespread opposition from local, national and international groups that advocate organic farming and environmental protection.

2012-09-17 |

Greenpeace Philippines plans ’Golden rice’ forum in Dumaguete

Dumaguete City is being eyed as venue for the Visayas forum against the genetically-modified golden rice targeted to hit the Philippine commercial market by 2013. Greenpeace Southeast Asia Sustainable Agriculture campaigner Danny Ocampo said Dumaguete is an ideal setting for the forum because of the strong tendency of local sectors towards organic farming, and since the city and Negros Oriental are known for their anti-GMO stance. There have been moves to oppose or ban the entry of genetically-engineered corn and eggplant to the province, Ocampo also said.

2012-07-06 |

North Cotabato (Philippines) field test shows Bt eggplant wards off borer

On Friday biotechnology experts, local agriculture officers and students witnessed the 15th harvesting of the genetically modified Bt eggplant, showing similar high consistency as in three other tests elsewhere in the country in warding off attacks by the main damaging pest, the fruit-and-shoot borer. The field test inside the University of Southern Mindanao campus would conduct three more harvests until July 10 to wrap up the first round of transplanting of the hybrid-eggplant variety, said Dr. Concepcion Bravo, the co-project leader and the former chairman of the USM Department of Entomology.

2012-06-18 |

Groups ask Philippine Supreme Court to issue temporary environment protection order against Bt eggplant trial

Various groups against genetically modified organisms on Friday urged the Supreme Court to issue a temporary environment protection order to stop the continuous field testing of BT talong by the government. [...] "We praise the Supreme Court for acting swiftly on the petition of the people to stop the Bacillus thuringiensis eggplant field testing. Through the issuance of the Writ of Kalikasan, it has temporarily stopped the new application of permits to field test Bt talong," Dr. Chito Medina, national Coordinator of farmer-scientis group MASIPAG, said.

2012-05-18 |

Greenpeace Philippines optimistic ’Bt’ eggplant to be permanently banned

International environmental group Greenpeace is confident that the Supreme Court will permanently ban the field testing of genetically modified organism, particularly the BT talong (eggplant). ”The Writ of Kalikasan is not an ordinary procedure at dahil sa decision sa SC we can now openly discuss this issue,” said Lawyer Zelda Soriano, political adviser of the Greenpeace-Southeast Asia, at a media briefing in Quezon City on Friday. Soriano said the respondents, officials and scientists of the UP Los Banos and other proponents of BT talong field testing, will be summoned by the SC to present ”all possible defenses” to argue that it is ”safe and not negative to the environment.”

2012-05-14 |

Philippine Supreme Court stops field trials of genetically modified eggplant

Cultivation of genetically modified eggplants--perceived to be dangerous for human consumption--will be put on hold after the Supreme Court issued a writ of kalikasan in favor of petitioners led by environment group Greenpeace. Details of the writ issued last Friday however were kept private by Greenpeace while the High Court has yet to post the resolution on its website. “As per advice of our lawyer, we cannot share the copy with the media. Basically, the writ is for respondents to justify the field trials. I cannot go into the details for now,” Daniel Ocampo, sustainable agriculture campaigner of Greenpeace Southeast Asia, said in a text message to Sun.Star.

2012-05-04 |

Philippine GE eggplant war: Petition against field trials ”is not in the national interest”

Top Filipino scientists have urged the Supreme Court to junk a petition filed by environmental groups against the field testing of genetically modified eggplant in the country. Emil Javier, president of the National Academy of Science and Technology and former president of the University of the Philippines, said “Bacillus thuringiensis (Bt) eggplant is potentially the best environmentally friendly technology for eggplant production.” [...] He argued that the filing of the petition “is not in the national interest, and the academy, together with UP and the mainstream, reputable scientists from the local and global community strongly support agricultural biotechnology.”

2012-04-26 |

Philippine Supreme Court urged to ban cultivation of GM eggplants

Public officials and environmental group Greenpeace asked the Supreme Court on Thursday to stop the field testing of genetically modified eggplant, a variety they said can cause damage to human health and natural vegetation. Specifically, the petitioners which also include Puerto Princesa City Mayor Edward Hagedorn and Bayan Muna party-list Representative Teodoro Casiño asked the Court to issue a writ of kalikasan, which is a legal remedy to address environmental concerns. [...] The Philippines has a recorded 500 varieties of eggplant and related species. With its built-in insect-resistance gene, Bt eggplant poses risks of creating aggressive weeds that may wreak havoc to local agriculture and natural habitats, said Daniel Ocampo, sustainable agriculture campaigner of Greenpeace Southeast Asia.

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