Biotech Updates

Farmer Speaks Up about the Stopping of Bt Eggplant Trials

June 26, 2013

Rosalie Ellasus, a progressive farmer from the Philippines, expressed her opinion about the decision of the Philippine Court of Appeals to stop the field trials of Bt eggplant. According to Ellasus, eggplant is the leading vegetable in the country and it would be easier for Filipino farmers to plant it if the technology was allowed to proceed towards commercialization. "Farmers don't want to hurt the environment and mothers don't want to feed harmful food to their children," she stressed. She also said that the CA decision has affected the international reputation of the country in terms of progress and technology.

Biotech crops have been planted by farmers around the world and have harvested more than 3.5 billion acres for the last 17 years. Ellasus stated that a few of those acres have been hers. Planting biotech crops have helped her financially to provide for her family's needs.

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Meanwhile, 16 professional scientific societies have expressed their support for Bt eggplant field trials in the Philippines noting that "field trials are essential steps in research and development of new varieties where scientific evaluation becomes the basis for assessing the performance of a new crop variety" . They said that the decision runs counter to the government's goal for food security.