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Green Party attacks government on agriculture

By M. Alkhazashvili
Translated by Davit Kipiani
Tuesday, July 1
Giorgi Gachechiladze, leader of the Green Party, says Georgia’s agriculture sector is shrinking rapidly while imports are rocketing.

Wheat fields are a third of their size in 2003, he says, while corn fields have decreased by 60 percent and sunflower crop by 70 percent over the same period.

“Development of domestic production interferes with the private business interests of government officials and their relatives, so that they don’t see it as being as profitable as importing products,” the newspaper Kvela Siakhle quotes Gachechiladze as saying.

He also claimed that imported food products are often not safe for consumption.

“Georgia imports low quality products because it’s affordable for the low-income population. These products are often past the expiry date or genetically modified or contain heaps of chemical additives that put us all at risk,” Gachechiladze said.

Agriculture Ministry representative Tengiz Kalandazde said those allegations are groundless without testing to prove the products in question are of low quality.