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Organic Consumers Association

President Chavez Announces Ban of Genetically Engineered Crops in Venezuela

Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez Frias has announced that the cultivation of genetically modified crops will be prohibited on Venezuelan soil, possibly establishing the most sweeping restrictions on transgenic crops in the Western Hemisphere. Though full details of the administrationÂ’s policy on genetically modified organisms (GMOs) are still forthcoming, the statement by President Chavez will lead most immediately to the cancellation of a contract that Venezuela had negotiated with the U.S.-based Monsanto Corporation.

Before a recent international gathering of supporters in Caracas, President Chavez admonished genetically engineered crops as contrary to interests and needs of the nationÂ’s farmers and farmworkers. He then zeroed in on MonsantoÂ’s plans to plant up to 500,000 acres of transgenic soybeans in Venezuela.

 

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