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Last Updated: Sunday, 18 May, 2003, 15:10 GMT 16:10 UK
GM protesters cut down crop
GM protest in London
GM crop have been the subject of many protests
Protesters in Fife have cut down a field of genetically modified (GM) crops, police have said.

An inquiry has been launched into the damage to GM oilseed rape plants at Wester Friarton Farm, Newport-on-Tay, in north Fife.

Protesters said the plants had been chopped down overnight as part of an ongoing campaign, in which another farm-scale GM crop trial at Daviot, Aberdeenshire, was damaged last weekend.

The action is the latest setback to Scotland's GM crop programme, during which the Scottish Executive abandoned a farm scale trial at Munlochy, on the Black Isle, following pressure from campaigners.

Public health

In January the Scottish Parliament's Health and Community Care Committee published a report that cast doubt on the executive's claims that there was no risk to human health linked to GM crops.

The report, which was welcomed by protest groups such as the Munlochy Vigil, claimed public health risk assessment procedures were "flawed" and voiced alarm over monitoring procedures.

A spokeswoman for the Fife protesters said: "That massive swathe of dark green now scythed across the bright yellow slope of the flowering field is a shout of the people's defiance against the madness of GM farming.

"It expresses people's serious fears for the safety of public health, for consumers' right to choose GM-free food and their fears of a long-term environmental catastrophe."

A spokesman for Fife Constabulary said: "An investigation has been launched by police in Cupar into damage that has been caused to a field of GM crops."

GM crop trial sites announced
08 Jul 02  |  UK News
How likely is GM crop contamination?
03 Jul 02  |  Science/Nature
Campaigners 'trampled GM crops'
08 Jun 02  |  Scotland

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