December 11, 2009

Biologist publishes Sir James’ article

Former Prime Minister of St.Vincent and the Grenadines Sir James Mitchell has had an article he authored on genetically modified foods published in the internationally renowned journal “Biologist”.{{more}}

The publishers used the article headlined “Learning a new language in order to feed the world” as the guest editorial in their August 2009 edition.

In May 2009, the article was presented by Sir James at the 27th meeting of the InterAction Council in King Abdullah City, Saudi Arabia.

The InterAction Council is a grouping of former Heads of State and Government, which was formed to bring together former world leaders to mobilize their energy, experience and international contacts, in an effort to develop and encourage change around the world.

The article was originally titled: “Assisted Biological Crops” and was also published as an opinion piece in SEARCHLIGHT’s June 5th, 2009, issue.

In the article, Sir James establishes the importance of scientific research towards the continued development of man and the ways in which it can improve the quality of lives.

He also tried to allay the fears surrounding the terms “genetically modified” and “genetically engineered”.

“As I tried to point out it’s just a modified form of plant breeding that they are doing.

They unfortunately used this language of ‘genetic engineering’ which really gives a terrible label that you are creating something,” said Sir James.

“It’s a serious thing,” he said, and added “forget about GM and GE…Let us learn a new language and a new alphabet.” He suggested the term: “Assisted Biological Crops” be used in their stead.

“I am pleased,” said the 78-year-old, who returned to active politics as part of the ‘Vote No’ campaign three months ago.

He further stated to get the article in this journal as a guest editorial “is no mean achievement”.

“I am pleased that I have been able to do something which was presented to top politicians of the world,” said Sir James, as he referred to his presentation to the InterAction Council, whose members remain quite influential as they have access to the current leaders.

Sir James became a member of the Inter Action Council earlier this year.

The InterAction Council comprises 22 former world leaders and associates from the Americas, Europe, Africa, and the Far and Middle East.

The Inter Action Council will meet next in Tokyo, in April 2010, and Sir James is already making plans to attend.

Sir James is an agronomist and a chartered biologist, and was Prime Minister of St.Vincent and the Grenadines from 1984-2000. (HN)