§ Mr. David Heath
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will set out in the case of farm-scale trials of genetically modified crops(a) with which party those farmers hosting the trials have a contract, (b) what fees and compensation payments are involved, (c) what protocols have been agreed for growing the crops, (d) what arrangements have been made for access to the farms for research or publicity purposes, (e) what are the procedures for harvesting the crop and (f) what are the procedures for destroying the crop after harvest. 
§ Mr. Meacher
[holding answer 9 December 1999]: (a) Farmers have contracts with member organisations of the industry biotechnology body SCIMAC (supply chain initiative on modified agricultural crops) which hold consents for the release to the environment of GM crops for the purpose of the farm-scale evaluations.
(b) Under the renewed agreement with industry announced on 5 November covering the conduct of the farm-scale evaluations, no direct commercial benefit will be sought by the consent holders from the plantings or obtained from use of the crops during the farm-scale evaluation period. Our understanding is that the farmers growing the crops in the farm-scale evaluations are likely to be compensated by the consent holders; that would be a matter for them.
(c) The crops are grown according to a Government-endorsed industry code (the SCIMAC code), which sets out best practice in planting, managing and using GM crops.
(d) The independent contractors conducting the biodiversity research through the farm-scale evaluations have all necessary access to the farms. Other research on the crops may be allowed where this does not conflict with the primary purpose of the farm-scale evaluations to investigate their effects on biodiversity: research on gene 71W flow has been added in this way. We are unaware of any other arrangements for access to the farms for publicity; that would be a matter for the farmers.
(e) Crops are harvested according to the conditions of the consent issued under Directive 90/220/EEC, and procedures in the SCIMAC code.
(f) The fate of the crops is set out in the consents for growing them and the approvals for use of pesticide. In the unlikely event that any of the crops within the farm-scale evaluations obtain full regulatory clearance to enter the UK food or feed chain during the farm-scale evaluation period, the produce would be used within identity-preserved channels.
§ Mr. David Heath
To ask the Secretary of State for the Environment, Transport and the Regions if he will outline the circumstances which he has identified whereby a crop from a GM farm-scale trial could enter the human or animal food chain; and what procedures there are for ensuring identity preservation and labelling of such crops and products of livestock fed on such crops. 
§ Mr. Meacher
[holding answer 9 December 1999]: The circumstances whereby a crop from a GM farm-scale evaluation could enter the human or animal food chain are when it has received food and feedstuffs approval through the EU regulatory system, and where a pesticide has been applied, approval under the UK pesticide regulations. The crops will be grown in accordance with the SCIMAC guidelines which ensure segregation and identity preservation on the farm. Currently, none of the GM crops within the farm-scale evaluations have all the necessary approvals to enter the UK food or feed chain. Should any of the crops receive full clearance during the farm-scale evaluation period the produce, to ensure consumer choice can at all times be respected, would be used within identity-preserved channels. This would include any products reaching the consumer from livestock fed on such crops. The particular procedures chosen to achieve this, including labelling, would be established at the appropriate time.