The People's Biosafety association demands that the
genetic manipulation tests of garden plants and wild-growing berries must be
interrupted and an unbiased account should be made of all the studies and their
investments as well as of the risks the studies have caused this far. An enquiry
(in Finnish) has been sent to the Board for Gene
Technology, the highest ranking authority that oversees gene technology in
- In the light of our current information we cannot
take a confident view of what might be happening in different institutions'
research activity, says Ossi Kakko, the Biosafety association's region
correspondent of the Pohjois-Savo region.
Cloudberry of Finland
- Genetic manipulation behind closed doors?
Biopiracy has become a well-known concept during the
last few years, as many developing countries have stood up to protect their own
local gene resources from the gene hunters of biotechnology companies and
research institutions. However, there are valuable genetic resources also in the
North, and the hot question of the day is this: Who has the right to the genetic
resources in different countries?
The People's Biosafety Association arranges a meeting
for discussion in Turku, Finland on 8. August 2000. The meeting is a part of the
international environmental meeting Ekotopia.
One main point of the discussion will be the Northberry Project of the Kuopio
University, a project where the researchers are looking for the greatest
cloudberry of Finland.
- This is an undertaking of the gene researchers, who
are collecting resources to be used in developing genetically manipulated
cloudberries. It would have been a proper thing to do to tell about this fact
also to those who pick the berries and who are asked to give their cloudberries
to the gene researchers. This is how Ossi Kakko, a friend of cloudberries and
arctic bramble from the Pohjois-Savo region, criticizes the manner of
- We also wonder why this kind of a project has been
started and how it has received millions of Finnish marks, as it's a well-known
fact that the Finnish market will not accept genetically manipulated foods.
- The worst possible threat to Finnish production of
nature berries is that genetically manipulated material should spread out to the
wild-growing population. In that case it would be impossible to guarantee that
the berries and the berry products that the consumers buy are clean and do not
have any genetically manipulated genotypes.
For further information, please contact:
More information about the Northberry project: www.uku.fi/northberry
Former version of the page from July 2000: northberry.htm