GeneWatch PR: Dr Sue Mayer, GeneWatch UK's Director Appointed to Agriculture and Environment Biotechnology Commission

For Immediate Release – 5th June 2000

Commenting on her appointment to the Government’s new Agriculture and Environment Biotechnology Commission (AEBC), Dr Sue Mayer, GeneWatch UK’s Director said:

"The AEBC will have a challenging task. To be effective, it must gain the confidence of the public by addressing their concerns. These include being able to choose GM-free food if they wish; how to deal with the effects of genetic pollution on other farmers and the environment; establishing who is liable for any unforeseen effects; and having a say in the use of the technology."

"The AEBC will also have to prove itself by providing high quality, relevant advice for the Government to act upon."

"Openness and transparency must form the basis of the way in which the Commission works."

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Notes to Editors:

  1. AEBC website:
  2. Biographical Details: Dr Sue Mayer is the Executive Director and a founder member of GeneWatch UK, an independent policy research group based in Derbyshire that monitors developments in genetic technologies. Sue has Degrees in Veterinary Science and Pharmacology and a PhD in Veterinary Cell Biology from Bristol University. She has worked in veterinary practice, as a University lecturer and as manager of the RSPCA's Seal Assessment Unit. From 1990 to 1995 she was Director of Science at Greenpeace UK where she was involved in developing policy on GMOs. In 1994, she spent a sabbatical year at the Centre for the Study of Environmental Change at Lancaster University looking at issues of risk and continues to be an honorary research fellow there. From October 1995, she was a freelance consultant on science and policy issues, working for a wide range of clients including the Whale and Dolphin Conservation Society, Unilever, Sainsbury’s, the Consumer’s Association and Greenpeace before establishing GeneWatch UK in January 1998.

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