Farmers, group seek to help Big Island in GMO suit

Farmers, group seek to help Big Island in GMO suit

HILO, Hawaii (AP) - Three organic farmers on the Big Island and a national group against genetically modified crops are asking to help Hawaii County defend itself in a federal lawsuit.

The Hawaii Tribune-Herald reported Tuesday that the Center for Food Safety and the farmers filed a motion last week to intervene in the case in U.S. District Court in Honolulu.

The lawsuit is challenging a county law that would ban open-air use and testing of modified crops, with exceptions for farmers who are already growing them.

A hearing is scheduled for Oct. 23.

Several groups, including florists, banana and papaya growers and ranchers, filed the lawsuit in June. They argue the ban is not allowed under state and federal law. They say there are no findings that the crops are harmful.

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