Submitted by Robert Vint
STAKEHOLDER REPRESENTATION ON THE FSC
The present Government has often spoken of the
importance of involving all stakeholders in decision-making yet,
with the onset of the GM crisis, it became clear that there was
much public concern about the imbalance in the interests represented
on several key government select committees and advisory committees.
Commercial interests seemed predominant and the interests of consumers,
of the environment and of Third World peoples seemed to be unrepresented
on most of these.
In the light of this concern, what steps have
been taken to ensure balanced stakeholder participation in the
Food Standards Committee? In particular, I would like to know:
1. What are the declared interests (financial,
professional, personal, etc.,) of the 13 existing members of the
Select Committee in the biotechnology industry?
2. What selection procedure took place to ensure
that the interests of effected partiesconsumers, the environment
and the peoples of the Third Worldwould be represented
in the appointment of committee members? What selection procedures
will take place in future.
3. Were any of the largest NGOs representing
these stakeholders approached to recommend scientists or other
representatives as members of the committee? Are there plans to
4. What steps have been taken to remedy any
imbalances in the make-up of the committee resulting from past
failures to ensure balanced stakeholder participation? What steps
have been proposed for the future?
5. Are concerned parties (such as the major
NGOs) informed of agenda items in advance of meetingsor
are they, as a matter of course, consulted on relevant issues
prior to the issuing of recommendations? Are there any plans to