FIFTH District Board Member Alain Gatuslao of Negros Occidental said Tuesday he is planning to conduct an inquiry on the entry of high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) in the country.
Gatuslao, chairman of the committee on laws, ordinances and good government, said he considers the issue a serious matter.
He added they can look into the possible violation of the ordinance banning genetically modified organisms (GMOs) in the province.
“It is more than just an economic unfairness but more on the health risk. The local government units have the power to investigate this matter,” Gatuslao said.
The sugar industry has been protesting the reported massive importation and use of HFCS by various industrial users and food processors.
Negros Occidental produces about 60 percent of the country’s sugar output.
Environment group Green Alert Negros in a statement reiterated its stand on the risks posed by HFCS.
GAN coordinator RJ Rojo said that “all forms of GMOs should be banned in Negros Occidental as stated in Section 3 of the ordinance which explicitly prohibits the entry, experimentation, field testing, and other purposes related to GMOs.”
The Provincial Government should not allow the proliferation of such products since it’s a gross violation to the ordinance and an insult to the landmark law, he added.
Published in the Sun.Star Bacolod newspaper on January 11, 2017.
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