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EU farmers want access to GM crops

A poll of European farmers has revealed that they consider new technology and genetically modified crops as the most important tools to increase food production, says the European biotechnology industry association, EuropaBio. These factors gained 37.1% of the vote in a poll held by the UK Farmers Weekly and the Dutch Boerderij, with replies also from farmers in Australia, Canada, New Zealand, South Africa, and the US. The remaining votes were split among more education and training (20.3%), investment in R&D (18%), removal of trade barriers (14.7%) and government intervention in food production (10%). EuropaBio is pressing the EU authorities to give farmers the choice to grow GM crops. This month, the European Commission granted its first GM crop cultivation approval in 12 years, but it is also considering ways to give EU member state authorities the freedom to prohibit cultivation of EU-approved GM crops (see this issue).

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