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Environment Sec backs GM food

Environment Secretary Owen Paterson is set to reopen the controversy over genetically modified crops with a speech extolling the benefits of the technology.

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Owen Paterson: 'Europe missing out on GM crops'

Environment Secretary Owen Paterson will today say that Europe is "missing out" on GM crops, which is now used on 12% of arable land around the world:

While the rest of the world is ploughing ahead and reaping the benefits of new technologies, Europe risks being left behind. We cannot afford to let that happen.

Mr Paterson will tell representatives from industry, science and the media that GM, if used properly "promises effective ways to protect or increase crop yields":

It can also combat the damaging effects of unpredictable weather and disease on crops.

It has the potential to reduce fertiliser and chemical use, improve the efficiency of agricultural production and reduce post-harvest losses.

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