CONTACT: LOIS GRAY
Iowa City IA 52242
Release: Aug. 27, 2001
ISU professor to speak on international implications of genetically modified
organisms Sept. 6
IOWA CITY, Iowa -- The Iowa City Foreign Relations Council kicks off another
year of programming with a lecture on "The International Implications
to Iowa's Agricultural Sector of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMOs)"
by Neil E. Harl, a professor of agricultural economics at Iowa State University.
The event is scheduled for Thursday, Sept. 6 from noon to 1 p.m. at the Congregational
Church, 30 N. Clinton Street, Iowa City.
Harl will focus on the current state of genetic modification of foods and
the degree of consumer acceptance, worldwide. Harl believes that the future
of genetic modification of foodstuffs depends upon three key economic relationships:
the demand for genetically modified and non-genetically modified foods (which
is in the hands of consumers); the supply of genetically modified and non-genetically
modified foods (which is in the hands of farmers as they make seed selection
decisions); and the cost of segregation of crops.
Harl, a member of the USDA Advisory Committee on Agricultural Biotechnology,
served on the first Biotechnology Committee of the National Association of
State Universities and Land Grant Colleges from 1981 to 1986. He is the Charles
F. Curtiss Distinguished Professor in Agriculture and professor of economics
at Iowa State. He is a 1961 graduate of the University of Iowa College of
Law and earned the Ph.D in economics from Iowa State.
Harl is particularly concerned about pollen drift and "gene flow"
as genetically modified crops are commingled with non-genetically modified
versions of the same crop and as pollen drift occurs. The cost and practicality
of keeping the crops separate promises to be a major problem in areas undertaking
to produce both genetically modified and non-genetically modified crops. He
is the lead author of a heavily used website on the StarLink controversy.
Because of consumer resistance to the use of genetically modified food ingredients,
U.S. exports of corn and soybeans have been adversely impacted in Europe and
in Asia, particularly in Japan and South Korea, Harl says.
The cost is $6 for members and $7 for non-members, and the deadline to register
for the event is noon Friday, Aug. 31. New Pioneer Co-op Deli will cater the
event. Checks may be written to the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council and
mailed to ICFRC, 120 International Center, Iowa City, Iowa 52242-1802. Reservations
may not be made by phone but last minute adjustments may be made. For more
information, call ICFRC Executive Director Tom Baldridge at 335-0351.
This event is sponsored by the Iowa City Foreign Relations Council with additional
support from UI International Programs, Joe Brisben, Securities Corporation
of Iowa and New Pioneer Co-op.
For those unable to attend, WSUI-AM (910) will carry this program Friday,
Sept. 7, following the noon news.
The Iowa City Foreign Relations Council is a non-profit association of community
and university people interested in learning more about U.S. foreign policy,
world affairs and current global issues impacting world societies. The group
provides members with the opportunity to hear more than 35 experts per year
who visit the UI campus and the Iowa City/Cedar Rapids area.
Meetings are scheduled from August to June to take advantage of these speakers
and are held at noon or in the evening to allow the widest possible participation
from the business community, other professionals, the community at large and
students, faculty and staff from the university. Meetings are scheduled at
catered luncheons, as dinners or as evening desserts.
ICFRC is part of International Programs, which consists of a number of offices,
centers, degree programs, academic programs, research projects and services.
Organized under the associate provost and dean for International Programs,
these units serve to further internationalize the campus and community and
promote global scholarship, research and teaching.