Bataille alimentaire

Le parlement européen vient d'adopter de nouveaux règlements rigoureux en matière d'aliments génétiquement modifiés qui soulèvent des objections américaines. Mme Noëlle LENOIR, la nouvelle ministre déléguée aux Affaires européennes du gouvernement français, expert international en bioéthique, en examine les implications.

L'adage qui dit qu'on est ce que l'on mange a deux significations. Il nous incite à suivre un régime sain et nutritif. Il nous rappelle aussi que la nourriture fait partie intégrante de notre identité culturelle, religieuse ou régionale parce que ce que nous mangeons et comment nous produisons ce que nous mangeons est profondément ancré dans notre histoire et nos traditions. En fait, les particularités de nos cuisines nationales sont source des surnoms les plus descriptifs que nous utilisons les uns envers les autres. Pour les Anglais, nous, les Français, resterons à jamais des « grenouilles » puisque nous mangeons des cuisses de grenouille, tout comme les Allemands seront toujours des « choucroutes » à cause de leur amour de la choucroute.

L'évolution des attitudes européennes vis-à-vis des aliments et des cultures génétiquement modifiés ne reflète ni plus ni moins que ce double souci envers la santé et l'identité. Depuis avril 1990, date à laquelle le parlement européen, sans opposition significative, adopta la première des deux directives sur l'utilisation et la diffusion des organismes génétiquement modifiés (OGM), l'opinion publique s'est montrée toujours plus soupçonneuse et hostile. Qu'est-ce qui a incité tant de méfiance vis-à-vis des aliments génétiquement modifiés ?

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