EU Farmers' Petition for Choice on Innovation in Agriculture

We the undersigned recognise that our ability to produce safe, high quality food over the past 100 years has been dependent on access to new technologies in agriculture.

Countries outside the EU are rapidly adopting new technologies such as agricultural biotechnology, allowing farmers to increase yields whilst reducing inputs and greenhouse gas emissions. Furthermore, new varieties of crops are nearing the market that will be able to withstand the impacts of climate change, such as drought, heat and cold, and which can be grown with significantly less nitrogen and phosphorus fertilisers.

Many varieties of crops developed using agricultural biotechnology have been assessed by the European Food Safety Authority as being safe to eat, and to cultivate, yet we are told that, for political reasons, we cannot access such varieties. Worldwide, 14 million farmers in 25 countries grew 134 million hectares of biotech crops in 2009 and Europe is missing out.

We therefore support a policy framework for access to new agricultural technologies and tools in Europe that is based on sound science and farmer choice; the choice to access innovation in agriculture where it is needed to keep Europe's farmers competitive in the market place, and to allow a more sustainable approach to food, feed, fibre and fuel production within the European Union.

Listed underneath is a selection of farmers who have already signed up to the petition for sound science and farmer choice on biotech.

Hectares submitted so far: 151,013 ha

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Name County Occupation Hectares managed
David Hill Norfolk Farmer 500 ha
Bob Fiddaman Hertfordshire Farmer 500 ha
J A Stilgoe Norfolk Farmer 515 ha
Mrs Shirley Harrison Aberdeenshire Farmer 164 ha
Mark Rooke North Yorkshire Farmer 120 ha
Phil Lodge South Yorkshire Farmer 100 ha
Mike Madders Staffordshire Farmer 300 ha
James Milligan-Manby Lincolnshire Farmer 750 ha
William Brigham Norfolk Farmer 250 ha
D J Hodges Gloucestershire Farmer 430 ha
Michael Horrell Cornwall Farmer 93 ha
Andrew Brown Rutland Farmer 250 ha

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