Massard speaks against the threat of New Genomic Technique
EFA MEP Lydie Massard intervened in the plenary debate around the new genomic techniques. The New Genomic Techniques (NGTs) refer to a set of advanced biotechnological methods used for precision breeding in agriculture. These techniques allow scientists to make specific changes to an organism's DNA, facilitating the development of crops with desired traits, such as improved yield, resistance to pests or diseases, and enhanced nutritional content.
MEP Massard raised farmers’ concerns, who are taking a stand against the adoption of New Genomic Techniques (NGTs), declaring it a betrayal of their aspirations for a dignified living. The fear that NGTs not only jeopardize the diversity and vitality of farming communities but also turn farmers into mere cogs in the machinery of profit-driven multinationals.
“Our farmers have expressed an essential message: they aspire to make a dignified living from their work, refusing to be mere instruments of multinationals interested only in their profits” She said.
Lyde Massard MEP spoke highly on the work Farmers do, what it means to the communities and the environment.NGTs, however, pose a significant threat by promoting standardisation imposed by external entities, disconnected from the intricate realities of local farming.
“ So opting for the adoption of New Genomic Techniques (NGT) would not only be a betrayal of them, but also a direct threat to the diversity and vitality of our farming communities.” She added.
The core concern for the Breton MEP revolves around the potential demise of local seed companies, as large-scale genetic techniques encroach upon the agricultural landscape. Farmers resist NGTs, driven by the desire to maintain control over their practices and uphold the principles of sustainability and self-sufficiency that form the foundation of farming communities.
“Farmers have established a relationship with our environments, creating unique and diverse crops and food. The introduction of NTGs threatens to break this already fragile link by encouraging standardisation orchestrated by outside players, disconnected from local realities.” She said.
While NGTs promise increased yields and pest resistance, farmers argue that these benefits come at the cost of abandoning the vision of agriculture deeply rooted in the life of the land. The debate is not just about technology; it's a battle for the soul of agriculture and the autonomy of farmers to shape their destinies. The future of our food, our farmers, and the very essence of sustainable agriculture hang in the balance.
“Adopting NTGs means abandoning the vision of a form of agriculture that is rooted in the life of the region, serving women and men and ensuring food self-sufficiency.” She concluded.