GMOs focus for rural areas

Rural Lumby and Cherryville are considering changes to their official community plan to make reference to GMOs

Two rural communities may take a stand against genetically modified crops although there is no way to stop them.

Rural Lumby and Cherryville are considering changes to their official community plan to make reference to genetically modified organisms.

“We’re not encouraging them,” said Eugene Foisy, Cherryville director, of residents’ concerns about the impact of GMOs on the environment, health and food security.

“This community is not supportive of it (GMOs).”

However, the areas, through the Regional District of North Okanagan, do not have the ability to ban GMO crops.

“It’s not up to local government, it’s federal jurisdiction,” said Rick Fairbairn, rural Lumby director.

Foisy admits any statement in the OCP would be motherhood in nature.

“We don’t have the teeth to do anything about it but we can tell the world the community doesn’t want them,” he said.

However, no action will be taken until RDNO’s agricultural advisory committee provides some direction on GMOs.

“Depending on what the committee says, staff will prepare a suggested amendment to the OCP,” said Fairbairn.