Bill Crabtree is one of GMO Pundit's pinup boys.
He is seen here in a wantonly celebratory pose, with fine drink and expensive food in hand.
GMO Pundit readers from outside of Western Australia may wonder what on earth is going on.(WA is Bill's home state.)
The bottom line is that a WA Parliamentary repeal of the anti-GM cropping legislation bought in a few years back by the former Labor Party state government of WA is about to be finalized by the current Liberal-National WA government.
This impending reapeal means that if political parties change power in the next state election due very soon in WA, it will be much more difficult for an incoming non-liberal government to re-institute a ban on GM cropping (otherwise known as a GM moratorium) that has previously completely restricted farmer choice in WA on this issue. Under the old state Labor government, GM crops were banned.
It's imminent removal of these carried over anti-GMO laws that has Bill celebrating.
Bill Crabtree has good reason to be gleeful, as he has been one of the most active and tireless campaigners to give West Australian farmers freedom of choice as to whether or not to use (or not use) crops developed using modern biotechnology on their own farms.
It is entirely possible that any incoming Labor state government would take away that farmer right to choose yet again, but repeal of the anti-GMO law makes such a regressive move by state Labor significantly more difficult.
Repeal of the GM Moratorium bill will thus help ensure that WA farmers can continue to plant canola oil seeds developed using transgenic technology if they so choose. They have taken up the technology very enthusiastically these last few years.
Many farmers in the West find that GM canola is a better way of getting the best yields out of canola, as out West they often have challenging weed problems which are better managed with a wider choice of herbicides.
Glyphosate tolerant canola offers one of the better herbicide options for controlling West Australia's weed problems. GM canola is the most practical way to allow glyphosate use with this oil-seed crop.
If only the short-sighted West Australian Labor party would follow the lead of their more progressive Federal colleagues, and put this matter behind them, WA's farmers could have an easier time exploring innovative farming methods to see what works best.