GM foods are banned from restaurants in the Houses of Parliament despite government claims it is ‘probably safer’ than other meals. Government ministers are demanding that ordinary families should abandon their reluctance to eat genetically modified food, however they are banned from MPs’ plates. This week the food and farming secretary, Owen Paterson, launched an extraordinary propaganda campaign to encourage the nation to accept GM crops and farming
He bolstered his campaign with claims that some seven million children in the Far East could have been saved from blindness or death in the last 15 years if only people had opened the door to a new form of GM ‘Golden Rice’. However, his efforts were unraveling today amid evidence that GM food is banned from the dinner tables of MPs, while his claims for the GM rice proved to be bogus. The House of Commons Catering service today confirmed that the ban on GM ingredients which dates back to 1998 remains in place as a matter of ‘customer choice’. It said: ‘In line with its procurement policy, the House of Commons Catering Service avoids, wherever identifiable, the procurement of foods that contain genetically modified organisms.
‘To this end, as part of the tendering process, food suppliers are required to work to a strict GM organisms policy and give assurances that goods supplied be free from genetically modified materials.’ It added: ‘The decision to avoid GMs is seen as largely a matter of customer choice.’ Mr Paterson has set himself up as the chief cheerleader for so-called Frankenstein Foods, however it appears that he has been unable to convince fellow MPs to accept them in their restaurants. As a result, the minister and fellow MPs leave themselves open to accusations of hypocrisy and complaints that they are telling people to ‘do as I say, not as I do’. Speaking earlier this week, Mr Paterson said: ‘The use of more precise technology and greater regulatory scrutiny probably makes GM organisms even safer than conventional plants and food.
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