French Minister of Agriculture opposes genetic modification

by Teresa Acklin
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At a special summer meeting of the Green party, which is at the heart of French opposition to genetic modification, the French minister of agriculture, Jean Glavany, criticized U.S. companies that he said were seeking to overwhelm world markets with genetically modified products. In particular, he accused Monsanto Co. and Du Pont of attempting "to flood the world with their products, whether genetically modified or not, and to propagate their own model of agricultural development and food supply."

While not defending French farmers who have attacked U.S. outposts, such as McDonald's, in retaliation for U.S. punitive tariffs, he said he understood the feelings of the protestors.

Mr. Glavany said he believes "agriculture is at a historic turning point — the change from issues of quantity to those of quality." Placing France on the side of quality, he cited "many adversaries as we embark on this revolution," especially singling out "market liberals from across the Atlantic who have set themselves the challenge of feeding the world on their own.