Six years after the first GMO-free-regions conference in Berlin, the movement is stronger than ever. The entry of the German Länder Thuringia, North-Rhine Westphalia and likely soon Baden Württemberg into the European Network of GMO-free regional governments, demonstrates this trend.
Central topics of this year's conference will be the right to national bans on GMO cultivation, deficient risk assessment of GMOs by the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), the upcoming seed legislation and the imports of GM soy in connection with the next European CAP reform.
The Green group is hosting the official part of the conference at the European Parliament on Wednesday 5 September.
The day before, Tuesday 4 September, NGOs and activists will meet in the afternoon at Mundo-B
, a key site for environment and development NGOs lobbying the European Parliament and Commission. There, we will offer workshops and give space for exchanging experiences, ideas and strategies for discussing the challenges ahead and for preparing joint activities on GMOs and related issues. The conference opening will take place in the evening and will be followed with a buffet and drinks with the organizers and guests.
Wednesday 5 September 2012
(Speakers to be confirmed)
9:30 – 9:45
Opening speeches by organizers and sponsors
"GMOs and GMO-free agriculture - where do we stand?"
Benny Haerlin (Save Our Seeds), José Bové (MEP), Evelyne Huytebroeck (Regional Minister Brussels) (tbc).
9:45 – 10:50
National bans on GMO cultivation – how to get it right?
Round table and joint debate with the audience -
Eric Poudelet ( Director “Safety of the food chain”, DG SANCO), Corinne Lepage (MEP), Sofoclis Aletraris (Agriculture Minister Cyprus, Council President) (tbc) , Delphine Batho (Environment Minister France) (tbc), Mahi Sideridou (Greenpeace EU), Moderation: Bart Staes (MEP)
10:50 – 11:05
Intermezzo I: Why honeybees need GMO free Europe and how bee-keepers have changed the co-existence debate
A message from bee-keepers Thomas Radezki & Walter Haefeker
11:05 – 12:15
Upcoming GMO approvals and the state of risk assessment - An overview on the first 10 years of EFSA and GMO risk assessment
Catherine Geslain-Lanéelle (Executive director of EFSA), Elisabeth Waigmann (EFSA biotech expert), Christoph Then (testbiotech), Paul Holmbeck (IFOAM), Ladislav Miko (DG Sanco) (tbc), Moderation: Carl Schlyter
12:15 – 12:30
Intermezzo II: Don’t call me GMO no more! Will “Cisgenetics” and other GMO-mutations reframe the GMO debate?
Short introduction to new semantics and technologies, Eric Meunier
12:30 – 14:40
Open space & global café in front of the meeting room
(a room for relaxing and more intimate exchanges near the meeting room will be open to exhausted souls all day)
14:40 – 15:00
Video conference (English only) with GMO-free Donau-Soja Conference
15:00 – 16:20
How “roundup ready” is Europe’s agricultural policy?
Homemade leguminous plants and a ban of meat factories would effectively bring EU GMO imports to an end
Martin Häusling (MEP), Alina Ujupan (member of Ciolos Cabinet), Sofia Gatica (Goldman Price winner, Argentina), Heike Moldenhauer (FOE)
Moderation: Antje Koelling (IFOAM)
16:20 – 16:50
Intermezzo III: Greetings from India, USA and China
Overview of the GMO situation in Asia and America
Debbie Barker (Centre for Food Safety, USA), Rajesh Krishnan (Greenpeace, India)
16:50 – 18:00
Conclusions and take home message from participants
3-minute statements from the floor
Moderation: Steve Emmott
Reception and dinner