The South African Freeze Alliance on Genetic Engineering (SAFeAGE)
The South African Freeze Alliance on Genetic Engineering (SAFeAGE) was founded in 1999 as the campaign arm of NGOs involved with the GMO debate. Safe Age initially served as the umbrella organisation for the anti-GMO campaign, and became a fully autonymous NGO in 2005.
SAFeAGE calls for participation and engagement on the part of the general public in the form of demanding rights to safe food and calling for GM Foods to be labelled. Industry is financially equipped to advertise the safety of GM foods. Consumers have the power to vote via our choices at the supermarket.
SAFeAGE originally called on the government of South Africa to introduce a minimum five-year freeze on:
- The growing of GE crops for commercial purposes or in field trials. The government should revoke all existing marketing and field trial permits and grant no further permission for commercial GE crops until the technology is proven to be safe, environmentally harmless and in the interests of the people of South Africa and her neighbours - the only exception being for strictly contained laboratory tests designed to assess ecological and health impacts.
- Consideration, research and development of sustainable alternatives to GE - like scientifically safe and biologically sound means of growing food - should be an integral part of this process
- The import and export of GE foods, farm crops and products derived from GE crops.
- The patenting of genetic resources for food and farm crops. The government should not issue patents on animals, plants, micro-organisms and their genes or any transgenic varieties thereof. Existing patents must be revoked.
SAFeAGE aim for
- A system enabling people to exercise their democratic right to choose products free of GE ingredients and derivatives.
- A system of consultation where people can objectively determine the desirability of GE crops.
- A comprehensive review of government policy and legislation concerning GE.
- Public participation in decision-making.
- Independent assessment of GMOs' social and economic impacts on farmers.
- A system to prevent genetic contamination of the environment.
- Independent assessment of the implications of patenting genetic resources. It is essential to develop public policy process which is open, transparent and includes civil society representation on the Advisory Committee to the Executive Council on GMOs.
- A full set of feeding tests that span generations, on mice, pigs and building up to humans.
Address: PO Box 358
Tel: +27 (0)21 447 8445
Fax: +27 (0)866 899902
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