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WA's court verdict on GM crops is a dose of common sense

By Michael Jones, Murdoch University

The WA Supreme Court has dismissed an organic farmer’s claims for damages from his neighbour’s genetically-modified canola crop.

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In a landmark West Australian Supreme Court decision, a farmer growing a genetically modified canola crop has been spared the blame after his neighbour accused him of contaminating his organic farm next door.

The case has prompted strong reactions, but my view is that the verdict is a victory for common sense. It is regrettable that the case occurred in the first place, and has caused personal anguish to both farmers, their families and their community.

The case involved two farmers, Steve Marsh and Michael Baxter, who owned neighbouring farms near Kojonup, about 250 km southeast of Perth. Marsh’s farm was certified organic by the National Association of Sustainable Agriculture Australia (NASAA).


The court ruled that Michael Baxter could...

The full text of this article can be purchased from Informit.