France avoiding genetically modified crops

Oct. 27, 2007 at 3:32 PM

PARIS, Oct. 27 (UPI) -- French President Nicolas Sarkozy has suspended cultivation of genetically modified crops nationwide, following a growing European Union trend.

By following the decisions of several of its European Union partners on the environmental issue, France was praised by environmentalists this week for taking action against the controversial crops, Deutsche Welle reported Saturday.

Greenpeace International anti-GMO campaigner Geert Ritsema said that while traditional crops may have potentially dangerous chemicals added to them, genetically modified crops have an inherent danger lurking within.

"Instead of spraying pesticides and herbicides, the toxins are produced in all of the plant’s cells," Ritsema said.

While the United States actively embraces GMO efforts, both Hungary and Germany have taken steps to limit the spread of the technology in recent years.

The German broadcaster said that recent opinion polls in France found that 80 percent of French citizens oppose the use of GMO products for various reasons.

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