The French province of Brittany, in the person of the vice governor, Pascale Loget, has signed a letter of intentions with the state of Paraná for the purchase of conventional soy from Brazil. The province annually imports 6 million tons of grains of the product.
According to Loget, within 60 days Brittany will be declared a territory free of genetically modified (GM) crops and is interested in how Paraná is enforcing a prohibition on the planting and sale of such crops.
Loget explains that at the moment Brittany imports most of its soy from the state of Rio Grande do Sul where GM soy is grown and sold and wants to change that because it does not want GM soy even as animal feed.
She says GM crops degrade the quality of food and that 80% of the population of France is opposed to consumption of GM foods even indirectly in milk and meat.
The governor of Paraná, Roberto Requião told the French mission that he is opposed to GM food for three reasons: there is a need for more research on the effects on the environment and humans, they create a greater demand for pesticides and there is an economic disadvantage.
Requião added that his state would have paid US$ 60 million in royalties this year if GM crops had been grown in Paraná.
Reporter: Lúcia Nórcio
Translator: Allen Bennett