Hawaii County Council discusses GMO issue

The future of genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in agricultural crops on the Big Island will remain in limbo a bit longer.

On Wednesday, a county council committee postponed decision-making on a bill that would ban GMO crops from being grown on the Big Island.

Farms already growing GMO produce would be exempt.

Committee members say more time is needed to study the proposal.

“I just wanted to make sure that we don’t target the wrong people especially the local farmers,” Hawaii County Councilmember Greggor Ilagan said. “I just want to make sure that we don’t hurt their businesses and we don’t hurt our agriculture business.”

“I don’t have all the answers and I don’t think we should be releasing these organisms into our environment until we have the proper answers,” GMO opponent Jennifer Jackson-Mydock said.

The bill will be back up for discussion at a hearing on July 2 in Kona.

Related story: Hundreds of Hawaii residents join worldwide rally against GMOs

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