Socialist Worker

Business watches over scientists

Issue No. 1736

University research is being hijacked by big business. University departments are increasingly taking funding from the companies whose products they are supposed to be 'investigating'. Scientists at Imperial College, Berkshire, did a ten-year study of GM crops, and concluded that GM crops were no more likely to be bad for the environment than conventional ones.

More than half of the £2 million cost of the research was provided by some of the biggest producers of GM crops-Monsanto, Du Pont, Shell Research, Unilever, and Plant Genetic Systems.

The British Dental Association endorses Ribena Toothkind. It also receives £55,000 a year from GlaxoSmithKline, which manufactures Ribena. Scientists at Queen Margaret University College in Edinburgh are researching Kellogg's. The company uses the research on its packets to endorse the idea that you can lose weight through eating its products.

The director of the centre, Professor Ann de Looy, told one newspaper, 'You don't need to reduce your fat intake if you increase your carbohydrate intake, including sugar carbohydrate such as Frosties.' Kellogg's has been funding the research at the centre since 1995. Tim Lang, professor of food policy at Thames Valley University, says the financial links are 'a disaster for food and public health'.

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Sat 24 Feb 2001, 00:00 GMT
Issue No. 1736
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