Rothamsted GM Trial Harvest

The GM wheat trial crop at Rothamsted Research has been harvested. It is far too early to talk about results yet, but the team at Rothamsted wanted to let you know about the harvest and to pass on their thanks to all the petition signatories. The protest group who said they were going to destroy the crop earlier in the summer did not have enough support to carry out their threat;

Professor John Pickett said: "The team and I were overwhelmed by all the messages of support we received from the petition signatories. You all have a significant role to play in ensuring this important, independent scientific study continues to progress so we can better understand whether this technology could help us deliver more environmentally sustainable food production in the future. We are only half way through our experiment and to ensure we get robust scientific results we need to continue the experiment next year and then get the data thoroughly analysed and independently peer reviewed for all to see. After all the great work done by Sense about Science this year, we hope next year's phase will pass without the threat to damage it."

Sile Lane, Sense About Science said: "We were thrilled by the support for the researchers. We are still reading through the comments 6060 people left on the petition. This is ongoing research so it's good for the scientists to know there's so much support for them from so many people. The questions you sent us have been a great way to clarify the research and Frances Downey is going to continue this. If you have further questions get in touch with her at fdowney@senseaboutscience.org.”

We have gathered some of the comments of support for the researchers from petition signatories, politicians and high profile supporters here (PDF) http://www.senseaboutscience.org/data/files/Dont_destroy_research/Dont_destroy_research_public_support_June_2012.pdf
The questions researchers worked hard to answer are here http://www.senseaboutscience.org/pages/plant-science-qa.html
There’s a time line of the summer's events, including Rothamsted's offer to debate with Take the Flour Back before the protest, here: http://www.rothamsted.ac.uk/Content.php?Section=AphidWheat&Page=Protest
Protestor Hector Christie was ordered to pay £3,850 in compensation to Rothamsted Research in August after breaking onto the site and causing property damage. He failed to disrupt the experiment: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-england-19373852  
If you would like to get general news from Sense About Science you can sign up for our newsletter here http://www.senseaboutscience.org/pages/support-us.html and keep up to date with the fantastic work of the researchers at Rothamsted on their website http://www.rothamsted.ac.uk/
Thank you again for your support.

Sile Lane, Sense About Science



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