Australia gov seeks public comment on legalizing raw milk products and GMOs

By Rady Ananda

Australia’s food standards authority seeks public comment on a report considering raw milk products in Australia, and food derived from a genetically modified soybean made by Bayer CropScience.

The Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) also recently approved a GM corn made by Dow AgroSciences (DAS-40278-9).  This GM corn is resistant to 2,4-D, half of Agent Orange, which is responsible for decades of birth defects in Vietnam.

The approval is not final yet, as the Australia and New Zealand Food Regulation Ministerial Council has 60 days from date of notice to ask FSANZ to review the application or inform FSANZ that it does not intend to request a review.

FSANZ is also considering allowing raw milk (non-pasteurised) products to be sold in Australia, under Proposal 1007.

“The assessment of these products looked at what production and processing measures and product characteristics are needed to provide a high level of safety for consumers,” FSANZ CEO Steve McCutcheon said.

“In its second assessment report, FSANZ is seeking comment on its recommendation to permit non-pasteurised hard to very hard cooked curd cheeses. This will involve changes to the Food Standards Code relating to storage time and moisture content requirements.”

McCutcheon said FSANZ would continue to look at permitting other raw milk cheeses through a new proposal that will use technical work already completed through P1007.

“Other raw milk cheeses are being considered separately because a wider range of processing measures and product characteristics need to be considered.

“The assessment work for P1007 concluded that raw drinking milk presents too high a risk to consider any permission in the Code. In the new proposal, FSANZ will also be reviewing the current exemption that allows raw goat milk.”

FSANZ is framing the regulatory evaluation of raw milk products based on the ability of processing to remove pathogens (which is the antithesis of raw milk, since, by definition, it is not processed):

You can read more details about these categories here.

FSANZ also seeks comment on Application A1051, which seeks permission for food derived from a genetically modified soybean (Bayer’s FG72) with a tolerance to the herbicides glyphosate and isoxaflutole, the news release said.

Bayer uses glyphosate in its Indaziflam products, marketed as Alion, Becano, and Specticle, but only in one particular formulation (SC 420).  Isoxaflutole is a broad-spectrum herbicide marketed by Bayer under the names Adengo, Balance, Boreal, Corvus, Lagon, Merlin, and Provence.

Monsanto’s formulation of glyphosate has been implicated in spontaneous abortion in cattle, birth defects in humans, as well as cancer, asthma, and other health problems.  A group of international scientists released a report last year detailing health and environmental hazards from the cultivation of GM soy and the use of glyphosate (Roundup) herbicide.

GM crops have also been linked to higher pesticide use resulting in a natural immunity developing in weeds (causing massive superweed problems) and immunity in insects, as well, threatening 65% of US corn production (the amount that is genetically modified).

Submissions must be made in writing and should clearly be marked with the word ‘Submission’ and quote the correct project number and name. While FSANZ accepts submissions in hard copy to our offices, it is more convenient and quicker to receive submissions electronically through the FSANZ website using the Standards Development tab and then through Documents for Public Comment.

Alternatively, you may email your submission directly to the Standards Management Officer at submissions@foodstandards.gov.au. There is no need to send a hard copy of your submission if you have submitted it by email or the FSANZ website. FSANZ endeavours to formally acknowledge receipt of submissions within 3 business days.

DEADLINE FOR PUBLIC SUBMISSIONS:
6pm (Canberra time) 14 October 2011

SUBMISSIONS RECEIVED AFTER THIS DEADLINE
WILL NOT BE CONSIDERED

Submissions received after this date will only be considered if agreement for an extension has been given prior to this closing date. Agreement to an extension of time will only be given if extraordinary circumstances warrant an extension to the submission period. Any agreed extension will be notified on the FSANZ website and will apply to all submitters.

Questions relating to making submissions or the application process can be directed to the Standards Management Officer at standards.management@foodstandards.gov.au.

If you are unable to submit your submission electronically, hard copy submissions may be sent to one of the following addresses:

Food Standards Australia New Zealand
PO Box 7186
Canberra BC ACT 2610
AUSTRALIA
Tel (02) 6271 2222

Food Standards Australia New Zealand
PO Box 10559
The Terrace WELLINGTON 6143
NEW ZEALAND
Tel (04) 978 5636

More information:

Also see: Gene security breached in Australia; farmer sues over GMO contamination
.

11 responses to “Australia gov seeks public comment on legalizing raw milk products and GMOs

  1. Regarding GMO’s (Genetically Modified Organisms). When you take out a gene from one type of thing, eg., a fish, and put that gene into something totally unrelated, eg., a tomato, you are contaminating that tomato with something that does not belong there according to nature’s laws! That is an experiment that has never been done before, and it is just bad science!!
    And in any case, those in society who are strictly vegetarian won’t like it, for sure! And there most definitely needs to be notification on products that indicate if they have genetically modified ingredients,–that’s only fair to consumers! But it seems that “big business” does not want consumers to know what they are eating! Should “big business” and the absence of consumer protection laws be allowed to decide what is good or not for consumers to eat?

    • Well said. Personally, I believe its too late to stop the evil; but I will avoid all foods that might possibly contain GMOs, as long as its possible.

  2. Moreover, i believe these corporations are endeavoring to supplant in our minds that we need to get their permission to enjoy the fruits of nature in any natural form. They need a severe correction from that particular hubris.

  3. Yes Wanda, they need their heads removing spontaneously for crimes against humanity. Oh and you can add Ecocide as well. It comes to something when the man mass of the population doesn’t even know what is being planned by those people in power because those people in power do not tell them anything. The announcement of a consultation process will never have been heard of by the masses because it will have been announced in a very discreet way. Probably the small ads section. The only people to know directly will be a minority of scientific types, a load of government shills and a handful of us types who ‘know’ what is going on and are trying desperately to educate the uninformed masses.

    Of course not being a native Aussie or Kiwi with access to the press and media down under I could be totally wrong about the public information exercise on this one.

    Then again I suspect I’m probably not that far off the mark really.

    Lets think about the situation from the peoples perspective for a moment. Even if they are being informed wholesale how many everyday people do you know actually understand the hidden agendas of the corporations, the big pharma lies, the threats to natural food, supplements and medicinal substances. What about the real threats that GMO’s present to the health of the people and the planet? Or the agricultural chemicals? How many of them actually know? How many actually care? The point is the vast majority of people are having enough of a struggle just keeping their heads above water to be pondering the inevitable agendas that are steaming their way. Not entrirely an acceptable excuse for inaction but its still having an effect on public responsiveness to these threats.

    Views and opinions welcomed.🙂

  4. Further to my earlier comments.
    We really have no idea as to the long-term effects of these GMO’s.
    Will we never learn from the problems of the past where long-term outcomes were so disastrous. For example,– the Thalidomide tragedy!!
    Again, why should “big business” dictate as to what is good for us and what is not!! They are more concerned about their big profits that the health of the people!!

  5. let’s hope the good folks in Oz can defeat the beast

  6. Hi,
    How can we defeat it when we don’t know about it!!! A friend in America drew my attention to this site, and that our Govt. was looking into raw milk sales etc.
    I’m getting the word out now.
    H

  7. It would be nice if we could buy milk that hasn’t been touched by the factories, ie not pasturized or homogonized. It is a lot better for you and hasn’t had the calcium wrecked from the heating.

    I will not eat GM food as long I can avoid it, how do we know if it isn’t going to cause our bodies more problems?

  8. I feel the same as LeeAnne. Yes to raw milk. No to GMO foods.

  9. why can’t we stay a green smart country? No GMO foods and let the people decide whether they want to drink raw milk??

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