Biotech giant Monsanto Philippines will implement stricter security measures when it undertakes another controversial field trial of its Bacillus Thuringensis (Bt) corn in a few weeks.
A more secure trial farm is necessary, according to Liza Parreno, Monsanto’s field supervisor, to prevent militant environmental groups destroying the area, as they did during the last Bt trial in Tampakan, South Cotabato, in August this year.
So the trial farm will be located on a half-hectare lot, surrounded by double eight-foot walls, and with plain iron sheets and barbed wire at five-meter intervals. Furthermore guard houses and a watchtower, staffed by local residents, will be built into the four corners of the farm.
Parreno revealed that the controversial trial in barangay Paraiso, Koronadal City, will still go ahead, as nearby residents and the National Committee on Biosafety of the Philippines have agreed.
The trail aims to establish the effectiveness of Bt-corn, which is genetically-engineered to combat the Asiatic corn-borer pest.